Friday, May 22, 1998

Single Reviews - May 22, 1998

Friday May 22 1998 - 12:28:56 AM

Cleopatra - Cleopatra's Theme - Maverick/Warner Promo 12"
I first saw these three girls earlier in the year on the Brit Awards shown on MuchMusic. They were very full of energy and kept shouting "Cleopatra, comin' atcha!!" which I thought was funny and cute. However, I never listened to their song, even when it showed up as a domestic release here in Canada. However, I decided to check it out when I saw it today. The girls have been signed to Madonna's label Maverick in the US. The B-side has the original UK album mix, as well as UK mixes from Brooklyn Funk and D+A. The original mix is the best of the three, poppy R&B style. D+A's mix is not bad, but Brooklyn Funk disappoints with boring beats and rapping that was not necessary. The A-side has the best mixes of the bunch though. The "US Club Mix" reworked by Frankie Anobile and Robert Hathcock spins the track into a west coast jeep anthem. The use of "Cutie Pie" by One Way as the main sample works really well. In the US remix form, it's a fun summer jam.

MAW featuring Louis Salinas - Pienso En Ti (I Think Of You) - MAW Records 12"
Masters at Work are back again with another smoking jazzy house track. Very much like their earlier "You Can Do It (Baby)" which featured George Benson on guitar and scatting, this time it's guitar and scatting with Louis Salinas. The song is very brazilian/latin in flavour. Side A is in the usual NuYorican style, with skittering beats and rhythm. The "Smooth Out House Mix" on the B-side is just that, and the Latin Soul Mix is wicked. If you've heard the NuYorican reworking of "Watching Windows" by Roni Size, you'll notice that this is very similar, with chanting and wild jamming from Luisito Quintero, Carlos Henrique, Gene Perez, Albert Menendez, India and Nelson Gonzalez Sr. and Jr. This is a song you really listen to. Play it for the after hours house vibe, it's obviously not going to go over well in a peak-hours commercial dance/nrg/house set. One musically ignorant person at my local DJ store commented "You have to wear a beret when you listen to this stuff!" WHATEVER, MISS THANG! If you see it, get it!

All Saints - Never Ever (Remixes) - London UK 12"/London US Promo 12"
This is the girls' latest US release. The US copy has the "Rickidy Raw Urban Mix" which is almost no different from the original mix. The All Star mix time compresses the vocals to speed up the tempo of the song, but it's a cool remix. The song finally has some "life" in it, with a funky hip-hop groove. The B-side features dubs from UK's Booker T, but the best mix is "Booker T's Vocal Mix" which has completely new vocal production and has that sweet garage flavour. Unfortunately, that mix is only on the hard-to-find UK 12".