Rolling Stone - 10/26/00, p.1143.5 stars out of 5
- "...A bleary-eyed chill-out soundtrack, full of mellow beats and classic soul..."
CMJ - 9/18/00, p.26
"...[A] sultry mix of chill house, heady hip-hop and sultry soul..."
This is a Various Artists mix CD compiled by Groove Armada.
Includes liner notes by Bill Brewster and Groove Armada.
It must be slightly frustrating to be Groove Armada. With the Fatboy Slim remix of "I See You Baby" slowly becoming Groove Armada's unrepresentative single that everybody seems to know, this personal installment into the Back to Mine mix series is where the heart of the band beats the most. No, this mix album is not a quick-draw of all sorts of proto-stupid, club-friendly gunplay to make people shake that ass. Instead it's an opportunity to help once again show people that the band is more about putting their firearms on the nightstand, resting one's behind on a comfy couch, and putting on some slow, amorous grooves. For starters, choosing songs like their great rhythmic romantic take on A Tribe Called Quest's "Description of a Fool" or the effective beats of Tony D can do nothing but help. Really, how many other bands would later holster Al Green right next to Roots Manuva? About mid-way through, though, it does delve into some seriously trite slap-jazz. These excursions (think BBG and Sir Raymond Mang) show just how dangerous it can be for musicians in the trip-hop realm to veer perilously close to Kenny G instead of Tricky. Regardless, Back to Mine is generally a mix that traces around an interesting idea: maybe the more trip-hop stylings of musicians have more in common with, say, Barry White than Brian Eno? That might not be so wrong. Because if the mainstream world considers Groove Armada to be the type of musicians to get to watch somebody wobble their buttocks, their actual mentality is more about the music to play after you get that person to go home with you. It wouldn't be so bad if more pacifists like Groove Armada were sheriffs from time to time. ~ Dean Carlson