The Diggin In The Crates Crew just put out this ill remix album as a thank you to the fans for twenty years of support. Obviously the beats and rhymes are top-notch, with non-stop boom-bap slickness from beginning to end, as the unit utilize their world-class in-house production, while allowing a few of their their upper-echelon alumni to reshape their classic tracks. Alchemist sets it off with military precision as his tense string samples set the scene for the crew’s lyrical murder on We All, while Bink’s remix of Da Enemy is so fly you might get vertigo, and L’s legendary rhymes stick fast to the track like Olympic sprinters, leaving Joey Crack to end the tune with a heavyweight verse.
After Apollo Brown’s dope work on his 12 Reasons To Die tape last year and a masterfully-crafted Planet Asia remix EP, it’s no surprise his soulful take on All Love is an album highlight. The drums drop in and out to keeps you guessing, and his dynamic horn arrangements swirl through the mix over nicely underplayed kicks, accommodating only the finest rhymes from the D.I.T.C MC’s. Lord Finesse loops dense organ chords for his Thick remix; with Big L flowing at his belligerent best over a percussive use of clean snare hits, finding Finesse still at the top of his instrumental game. The first of two Best Behaviour flips from Showbiz utilizes an old school guitar lick thick with wah-wah fuzz; before DJ Premier’s chilled Diggin In The Crates re-make provides an album highlight; his trademark melodic chops hitting hard but remaining musical like PLAYTAWIN on The Ownerz.
Buckwild loops some epic brass stabs for Casualties Of A Dice Game‘s mid-paced bounce, slowing the speed to lead into 9th Wonder’s ice-cool sounds on Time To Get The Money. Diamond D programmes some crisp drum hits on Internationally Known , his claps echoing the snare shots as they cracking under a cloak-and-dagger guitar line that exudes cinematic espionage. NY-based beatsmith Marco Polo gets dramatic on Way Of Life, as his MPC slams out a phat horn loop that lumbers through the tune; while KRS-One’s flawless flow floods Buckwild’s Drop It Heavy remix, and Big Pun’s winding phrases envelop the track as it draws to a close.
O.Gee stacks neck-snapping breaks over theatrical classical samples on Foundation, making for one of the album’s more experimental instrumentals; leaving Showbiz’s second shot at Best Behaviour to end this masterful mix of raw Hip Hop on a cold, clear tone that packs a menacing chill. Before I even started typing or you pressed play we both knew this was guna be ill; producers and MC’s of this calibre need to collaborate more often on crew projects. It’d give heads the dream collabs they’ve been waiting on for years, and keep new rap listeners rooted in the music’s history, while hopefully gaining these pioneering acts a few new fans in the process.
You can get The Remix Project right now for no money down, over at the D.I.T.C website.