Personnel: Paul Oakenfold (vocals); Grandmaster Flash, Pharrell Williams, Ryan Tedder, Brittany Murphy (vocals); Joseph Saddler (keyboards); Ian Green (programming).
Paul Oakenfold has been at the top of the DJ/producing game since the 1980s, and 2006's A LIVELY MIND found him still going strong. The house music icon shows off many of his familiar skills here, which can be both a strength and a liability. But while Oakenfold may not be on the cutting edge of the scene anymore, he still knows how to work an infectious house groove to perfect advantage.
A LIVELY MIND sparkles with high-profile guest stars, including actress Brittany Murphy on the thumping opener "Faster Kill Pussycat," Pharrell Williams on the driving disco jam "Sex 'n Money," and hip-hop pioneer Grandmaster Flash on "Set It Off." But it is Oakenfold's reliably pleasurable beats, samples, and top-notch production that distinguish the effort.