"Lounge" compilations usually feature an easygoing mix of acid jazz, trip-hop, and soft-toned electronica. Superficially this is great, as these styles can be great for relaxing, carousing, or even flirting. Unfortunately these same collections can be pretty musically spotty, and occasionally lean too much on fancy packaging to make an impression. Fortunately there are some gems to be had, the kind of wide-ranging comp to give night owls a soundtrack as unique as a group of new friends. Mr. Reynold's Opus is the first volume in a series planned by the brains behind The Bosco, an inviting Detroit lounge defined by clean lines and a sense of cool community. Opus extends the space's air of beats and easy comfort. Though it travels in familiar territory -- Bollywood exotics and kitschy funk, electronicized hip-hop, and loop-happy programming -- it also digs quite deeper than your average comp. The plugged-in groove of Anubian Lights' "The Mating Urge" ("Hey! It's you," the sexy madam says, "My friendly neighbor the hippie!") is an irresistible beginning, leading nicely into los Chicarrons' appropriately titled downtempo exercise "Summer Fling." Bongolian's (aka Big Boss Man) "Fatback Showdown" is as juicy as its name suggests, intersecting funk and acid jazz but keeping the sound at nearly vintage organic. Underappreciated Michigan MCs Binary Star get a shoutout, while Coldcut affiliates Hexstatic offer breaks for dancing with "Kids Can Dance." Bosco Prime Cuts, Vol. 1: Mr. Reynold's Opus winds into the waning hours with sitar-tinged work from a DJ Me DJ You side project called Inner Thumb, as well as a Bill "Ravi" Harris cut from his 1970-something album Funky Sitar Man. There's also the title track from Greyboy's 2001 effort Mastered the Art. The grand result is an expertly paced set list that understands the conventions of the lounge comp genre, but is happy to move slickly in its own direction.
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AllMusic Review by Johnny Loftus