The Stranger April 06,
Issued under the guise Beat Konducta (one of many pseudonyms used by California hiphop producer Madlib), Vol. 1–2: Movie Scenes first appeared last year in two volumes as a vinyl-only release. Ironically, it's being issued as a CD two months after the late Jay Dee's instrumental album, Donuts, hit stores. Movie Scenes is an accurate description: There are 35 instrumental songs that run between one and three minutes (most of Madlib's songs, whether cinematic or not, are pretty short) are randomly sequenced, and aren't intended for any movie hitting a theater near you, but they could be a soundtrack for a film in your mind.
Sonically, Movie Scenes finds Madlib experimenting with new production styles, from chopping up different segments of the same record, and then imaginatively rearranging the parts ("The Rock," "Outerlimit"); to creating long, looped tapestries of flavorful samples (the psychedelic "Left on Silverlake," which is reminiscent of frequent Alfred Hitchcock soundtracker Bernard Herrmann). Jay Dee's influence is keenly felt on a few of the tracks, particularly the dark and sinuous "Offbeat."
Overall, Movie Scenes is uniformly excellent, even if Madlib leaves few clues to allow listeners to apprehend a strong impression of what it's all supposed to mean. All that ties them together are multiple vocal snippets such as one of Method Man snarling, "I wasn't really feeling my shit, but all of a sudden I was feeling my shit."