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CD Review: RJD2 

The Collosus (RJ's Electrical Connections)

Producer RJD2 has fallen off the radar since 2002's fantastic Deadringer. And while his fourth album, The Colossus, may not exactly pick up where Deadringer left off — there's more emphasis on funk and soul than in the past — it suggests how RJD2 got into the whole hip-hop producer thing in the first place. His music has always been cinematic in scope, and instrumental tracks like the blaxploitation-soundtrack-ready "Let There Be Horns," the shuffling, bombastic funk of "Giant Squid" and the sci-fi club-bounce of "A Spaceship for Now" are widescreen, headspace-morphing cuts. The nuances and variety of sounds keep these tracks fresh and intriguing. Guest-vocal tracks like the big-band soul of "Crumbs Off the Table" and the synth-saturated hip-hop of "A Son's Cycle" are equally captivating. A few songs, like "Games You Can Win" and "The Glow," disappoint because the music is more backdrop than focus. But they don't disrupt this album's energetic and detailed flow. — Matt Whelihan

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