Various Rewind 5

The fifth instalment of this series, that teams progressive and often brand new acts with old music, takes on the catalogues of some of the arguably biggest names to date. Despite this, the compilation still manages to retain the underground current that links all the previous volumes. While straight-ahead covers of classic records are still good because of the mighty source material, the strengths and the highlights from the Rewind series come with the tracks that have added a few wrinkles to the original formula. The first track that qualifies in this category here is Black Shakespeare’s reworking of Fleetwood Mac’s "Dreams” into a lithe reggae number. Denmark’s Owusu and Hannibal continue their recent strong output with an spookily ambient reading of the Beach Boys’ "Caroline, No” while La’s J*Davey, a band with a huge buzz do little to quieten things down with their synth-laden version of Frank Zappa’s "Dirty Love.” Not every track reinvents the wheel, though and subtle approaches like Osunlade’s application of Afro-Latin flourishes to Prince’s "Crazy You” and the understated jazzy approach of ?uestlove, and James Poyser under the guise of the Randy Watson Project covering Sting, are all very worthwhile exercises that are just as welcome. So even though well-known names like Led Zeppelin and Burt Bacharach surface in this set this time around, the dedication to good music, whether popular or obscure, thankfully remains. (Ubiquity)