- Operating out of Brooklyn, singer-songwriter Jesse Boykins III and producer MeLo-X make distinctively soulful hip-hop that sits somewhere between early Outkast and D'Angelo. Back in early November, Ninja Tune dropped the newly formed duo's superb debut album, Zulu Guru. Perhaps due to the South London label wanting to draw wider attention to the project, a four-track EP featuring remixes by Jacques Greene and Travis Stewart arrived in December. These two remixes will now be rereleased as a limited 10-inch pressing.
Both reworks are of the album's lamenting "The Perfect Blues," and unsurprisingly, they're very different. Resisting the urge to ramp the stems into a frenzy of off-kilter percussion, Stewart's version under his Machinedrum moniker is a light stroll through the jazzier end of drum & bass. Boykin's heartfelt vocals are suspended above a gentle assembly of extended snare rolls and looping claps to fluid effect. On the A-side, Jacques Greene continues his recent run of form by primarily focusing on the original's depth. Maintaining the plaintive tones and glacial feel, the parts are lifted into a stirring cut of vocal-led deep house with a timeless feel.
A The Perfect Blues (Machinedrum Remix)
B The Perfect Blues (Jacques Greene Remix)