The notes for this CD ask, "What issue is more topical than the Brazilian rain forest? So what reissue would be more topical than Walter Wanderley's Rain Forest?" Politically, this may be true, but musically, this collection is anything but topical. From the first tune -- the monster hit "Summer Samba," the listener is catapulted straight back to the '60s when bossa nova was new in the U.S. and everyone wanted a piece of it. Organist Wanderley made a big splash with this CD, which went platinum in two years -- and it does evoke strong water images, like "poolside" and "ice skating rink." The jazzmen are underutilized, since most of the tracks are less than three minutes long and leave little room to stretch out. One exception is the pretty Ferreira/Marconi ballad "Rain," the only track where Wanderley plays piano rather than organ and which features a fine solo by Urbie Green on trombone. On "Beach Samba," Green gets to noodle a bit, but Bucky Pizarelli is heard stating the melody and nothing else. Despite all the sadness implied in the song titles, this CD has a jaunty feel to it and will be best enjoyed by nostalgic fans of that bygone era.
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AllMusic Review by Judith Schlesinger