Various The Very Best of Bossa Brava

Instinct Records has been serving listeners large doses of experiments in bossa nova since 1995, when it began a compilation series to glean the best, most sultry Brazilian vibe in dance music. The Very Best of Bossa Brava contains both topnotch pickings from the series along with some additional new numbers to keep the interest going. As such, it isn't another hapless aural journey through badly conceived "electronica," with anonymous vocalists and snatched timbale beats thrown in for good measure. The two-CD compilation boasts some delightful tunes, such as United Future Organization's "Tres Amigos" and Nicola Conte's remix of the Mo' Horizons track "Foto Viva." Amon Tobin makes an appearance (under the pseudonym Cujo) with the cleverly titled "The Brazilianaire" bearing his trademark atmospheric lushness and a repetitive rhythm section. For more vocal-heavy sounds, CD two offers Reminiscence Quartet's "Onda Anda O Meu Amor" and the Jazz Steppers' "Samba For Dais." But the most whimsical and danceable song is the humorous "Stinky, Stinky Ashtray" by Damn! With its blaring horns, infectious dance steps and hilarious chorus, it is the best tune of the lot. Overall these are 20 promising tracks that put the bossa vibe in a respectable place where it belongs. (Instinct)