Various Artists

Soca Gold 2001

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With its driving, percussion-based rhythm, soca music guarantees instant partying, which is its main purpose. Soca Gold 2001 goes one step further and transports listeners to the revelry of Trinidad's Carnival, with this strong compilation of the year's carnival hits. Most of the tunes exude the very best of what makes Carnival: joy, energetic spirit, and a latent naughtiness. From the opener, "Jump," an inventive take on the Isley Brothers' rock classic "Twist and Shout," to the joyously contagious dance rhythms of Krosfyah's "Forkin'," to the seductive groove of Traffic's "Hickey," this is a top-notch collection on every level. Even if all of the tunes weren't winners, Soca Gold 2001 would still be a must-have just for the legendary Super Blue's uproarious "Spirit to Wave."

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