Edson X


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Subtitled "a collection of smooth grooves + cool beats from Brazil," this two-disc set really puts the emphasis on "smooth" and "cool." And although it's billed as a various-artists compilation, most of the material appears to have been written and arranged by Michel Freidenson and Edson X; production is credited to the latter. What these guys have done is take straight-ahead, midtempo bossa nova and Bahia elements and overlay them -- quite gently, as it turns out -- with elements of nu-jazz, electronic funk, and drum'n'bass, creating long, luxuriant mixes of each tune that sooth more that they stimulate. That's not to say that this music isn't danceable; the jazz-funk workout "Sem Você" and the gorgeous "Terra & Céu" (sung by the wonderful Tania Maya) will both keep the dancefloor moving if it's already full of people -- though whether it will move people from the chillout room to the floor is a separate question. Elsewhere, the mood is slow and dreamy, as on the lovely "Outono," or explicitly jazzy, as on the trombone showcase "No Salao." Jittery breakbeats spice up the mix on the tastefully jungle-flavored "Batida de Coco" and "Amar Não Dói." There's some filler here, and by the end of the second disc you may find yourself wishing that this fine two-disc set had been condensed into an excellent single disc. But if you're thinking that way, it probably means you need to start at the beginning again and try to relax this time.

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