Sergio Mendes & Brasil '66

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Upon his first move away from A&M, Sergio Mendes signed with Bell, known mostly for pop fluff on the level of the Partridge Family, and practically jettisoned Brazil in search of a return ticket to the pop charts. Bones Howe is totally in charge of the production, Mendes has little to do with the arrangements (Bob Alcivar and Tom Scott handle them), and half of the material is Top 40 pop. It's surprisingly pleasant at times, too, with some traces of the Mendes '66-'77 sound still audible. But Mendes is a much more interesting musician than you'd suspect from hearing this -- and no, it didn't exactly send Top 40 radio into ecstasy.

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