Uncut - p.964 stars out of 5
-- "THE MIX-UP is the best record collection ever thoroughly digested and re-imagined by a bunch of guys in love with sound."
Personnel: Adam Horovitz (guitar); Money Mark (Fender Rhodes piano, Clavinet, Farfisa); Adam Yauch (upright bass); Mike Diamond (drums); Alfredo Rolando Ortiz (percussion).
Additional personnel: Adam Horovitz (guitars); Mark Nishita (Clavinet); Adam Yauch (bass guitar); Mike D (drums); Alfredo Ortiz (percussion).
Recording information: Oscilloscope Laboratories.
Illustrator: Bill McMullen.
With six highly celebrated official hip-hop albums under their belts, Adam Horowitz, Adam Yauch, and Michael Diamond have little left to prove to rap fans, except perhaps that they can still rock their instruments like they once did. With this in mind, THE MIX-UP brings listeners a full-length, jazz-funk jam-band exercise in a similar vein to the 1996 release, THE IN-SOUND FROM WAY-OUT, or the instrumental cuts on ILL COMMUNICATION.
None of the Beasties go anywhere near the mic on THE MIX-UP (except for the odd whistle), but thankfully, and as the thorough tracklist proves positive, all three can still hold their own in a jam session. Most cuts rely on a Hammond organ groove and funky wah-guitar, with "4th Street Break" and "The Rat Cage" proving especially tight. True students of the post-modern pilfer approach to music-making that they are, one can even hear traces of Lips Inc.'s "Funky Town" creeping into the Beastie's guitar riffs of "Freaky Hijiki."