Just in time for the holiday season, the renowned turntablist Mix Master Mike has a "Suprize Packidge" of holiday goodies on this long playing CD single, with a special guest assist by everybody's favorite "Modeling School" graduate The Automator.
The remix of "Surprize Packidge" doesn't actually turn out to be a huge surprise at all. The remix by The Automator has familiar audio loops heads will recognize from sources as disparate as Missy Elliott and Pharoahe Monch. This gives the track a little more of a hardcore hip-hop feel, while Mike's original version on CD track 4 actually has most of it's bass in outer space. Both versions are slamming though.
What's nice about this disc is that it includes three extra tracks of the man too many people recognize only as the Beastie Boys touring DJ doing what he does best: sonic audio collages. The heavy weight of "Audio Mass" features a simple pulsing beat, some crabbing and slicing, and as on his original version of "Suprize Packidge" sounds a little not of this earth. "Monster Eye Land" is much more grounded though; coming off as simultaneously analog and digital in it's construction. Mike is not so much the "comedian" in his mixes as fellow turntablists like Q-Bert and Kraze have been known to be, but what he does he does with superb technical skill. Just peep out the snippets of "Grudge Match" which mix up samples of the Beasties with Guru and Busta Rhymes among others; then completely abandons the initial starting point and doubles up the tempo for turntable tricks.
For anybody who is a fan of the sonic artistry of putting needles to the grooves and making things move, the man with more M's in his name than Eminem certainly delivers the goods. This "Suprize Packidge" would be a nice stocking stuffer for any such hip-hop head that you know, including yourself.
Music Vibes: 8 of 10 Scratch Vibes: 9 of 10 TOTAL Vibes: 8.5 of 10
Originally posted: December 13, 2000