Local CD spotlight July 11 2001

Faust and Shortee

When visiting www.faustandshortee.com — the cyberhome of Atlanta's own world-renowned co-ed co-habitating tag team DJs, Faust and Shortee — you're introduced to a cottage industry expanding just below the radar. While the lucky few have seen, heard or felt Faust and Shortee rock a party, not many may realize what else they've been party to.

On their website, they offer breaks records, instructional videos, tips on record hunting and even a humorous DJ dictionary along with the usual news, photos and upcoming gigs (to prove they're the hardest-working DJs in show business, they're even booking a European "honeymooners tour" after their September wedding).

And somehow in the midst of all this, they've managed to offer up their latest album. Digital Soul — Faust and Shortee's first joint album — follows separate releases on Bomb Hip-Hop Records. But unlike their Bomb output, which helped them scratch their way to the top of the turntablist ranks, Digital Soul contains no scratching.

That's right, no scratching, maybe there should be a warning label on the front. Digital Soul's 15 tracks showcase Faust and Shortee's production skills rather than their battle routines, though there is plenty of air left for DJs to perform along with or over the album. The hybrid analog/digital tracks alternate between off-kilter tribal percussion panning with bass stretching to catch up and more straightforward, laid-back looping breaks. Pianos lope and horns bleat on the spacey, heavily acid-jazz, rare groove-and-funk-influenced album.

While some may gripe Digital Soul is a bit too even or sparse without the manic scratch spikes that helped Faust and Shortee gain notoriety, the duo sells self-produced mix CDs online to remedy that. For fans of artists in the Dust Brothers/Ninja Tune/Tino Corps. tradition, Digital Soul offers another look at the couple's growing industriousness.

Faust and Shortee celebrate their CD release with an afternoon in-store performance at Criminal Records' 10th anniversary Sat., July 14, and a set the same night at Trinity.??