Various Artists

Café Après-midi: Cremeux

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What's great about the Café Après-midi series is that while every volume boasts a strong, unique identity they're all clearly part of a bigger picture as well, with each individual disc emphasizing a different facet of the breezy, effervescent musical spectrum that is compiler Toru Hashimoto's raison d'etre. While the sun-soaked soft pop of the late '60s has always been a crucial element of that equation, Cremeux emphasizes the genre more actively than previous sets, mining the vast Warner Bros. catalog to assemble songs from the Association ("Rose Petals, Incense and a Kitten"), Harpers Bizarre ("The 59th Street Bridge Song [Feelin' Groovy]"), and Paul Williams ("Mornin' I'll Be Movin' On"). Of course, there's no shortage of vintage bossa nova and MPB cuts, either -- highlights include João Gilberto's "Wave," Tom Zé's "Happy End," and Sergio Mendes' "Arrastao."