August 10, 2006

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Oakenfold, A Lively Mind
Maverick Records, 2006

A subset of Paul Oakenfold's fans are pretty torqued over his recently going producer/shaman, but there's no amount of bunched panties that can negate the fact that he deserves to do pretty much whatever he bloody well pleases after perfecting the trance genre and reinvigorating it record after record. For folks who need a little help placing the name, Oakenfold contributed the sweat-soaked "Ready Steady Go" to the scene in Collateral where Tom Cruise interrupts the festivities at an Asian disco, and if you liked that one — as if anyone couldn't — it's been stripped for parts for use by "No Compromise," which second-opinions its riff, and "Switch On," which took its James Bond guitar. Some guest heavy-breathing from actress Brittany Murphy in the KMFDM-crunchy "Faster Kill Pussycat" may be an annoyingly Hollywood move, but things would've been much worse if it didn't hit every sexy mark it shoots for. Another nice one involves Pharrell Williams joining Oakenfold to creak open the zoot-suit-draped coffin of '80s Robert Palmer in the "Addicted to Love"-like "Sex 'N' Money." B

— Eric. W. Saeger


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