The second volume in Mr. Bongo's Essential wrap-up of Brazilian wunderkind Marcos Valle focuses more on his easy listening and quasi-instrumental output, a set of suitably light productions that are far, far beyond the likes of Sergio Mendes and his breezy Brazilian contemporaries. The disc leads off with a darker, brassy rendition of "Os Grilos" (his breakout hit, known best to English-speaking audiences as "Crickets Sing for Anamaria" from Samba '68) and proceeds through 15 more of the best-produced songs in the Brazilian repertoire. For fans digging deeper than the widely available Samba '68, Mr. Bongo also includes several excellent Portuguese re-recordings of familiar songs; besides "Os Grilos," there are versions of "The One I Love" ("Seu Encanto") and "Chup Chup, I Got Away" ("Gente"). Also included are a few songs from 1971's outstanding Garra -- "Wanda Vidal" and "Com Mais de 30."
AllMusic Review by John Bush