The other night, while swilling Chardonnay at a press reception in Montecito among a crowd 20 years too old to be called my colleagues, I was struck with a great idea. Now, if you lived in a gorgeous Italian-style home, replete with Frieda Kahlo paintings and the like, and you threw a bash for members of the press and publicity, what music would you put on the hi-fi? Jazz? Classical? Not Enya, which is what our hosts chose to blare through their system. My new game plan is to start a consulting firm for these poor, deluded yuppies and gear them in the directions of the hip and new. For starters, I’ll throw this CD in the changer – and the crowd will give praise, thank you, for introducing some new sonic flavors into their bland stew of sucka New Age emcees.

I had all but given up on drum ‘n’ bass until this album made its way to my desk – no disrespect to all the heads out there, but there’s only so much of the same old boom-skat, boom-skat a gal can take before she turns the dial towards the latest sounds in DMX hardware. Not since Roni Size/Reprazent dropped New Forms back in 1997 has drum ‘n’ bass sounded so deep and mellow with enough raw, rough energy to keep the syncopated beat gymnastics innovative and fresh. FlashFusion moves from atmospheric quasi-downtempo grooves to heartier jump-up crowd pleasers without sacrificing production quality or fun.