Tuesday, May 8, 2007

DJ Shadow

Critical Beatdown
December 2006

Josh “DJ Shadow” Davis has always had music in his life—and even a little before that. “Four hours before I was born, I was at a Tower of Power concert with my mom and dad,” he says. It’s this closeness to music that has made DJ Shadow world renowned for his ability to take obscure melodies and mix them into masterpieces.

With trendsetting albums like Entroducing and The Private Press made completely out of samples, everybody thought they had DJ Shadow figured out. That is, until he released his latest album, The Outsider, a kaleidoscope of sounds featuring everything from Hyphy to Hard Rock.

And with the album’s single “3 Freaks,” a dance-friendly track, getting played on the radio, some fans have cried foul, claiming DJ Shadow has changed.

“People get comfortable when they think they have you pegged,” Shadow says. “Hyphy is something people in the Bay Area feel passionately about, and when I made [the album], I was channeling all the heroes of the movement, just as I was channeling all the heroes of the early Hip-Hop movement when I made Entroducing.” With a mindset like that, maybe change isn’t so bad after all.

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