Bom Tempo

[Concord Records]

Brazilian-born, U.S.-based Sergio Mendes staged a comeback in 2006 with his star-studded covers album, Timeless, and then solidified that return with 2008’s Encanto. Both albums were produced by Black Eyed Peas leader On Bom Tempo, Mendes takes the production reins himself with superb results. A sublime mix of samba rhythms, bossa nova beats and jazzy arrangements, the disc carries a glycerin-smooth vibe. Stellar moments include “You and I,” a jaunty, horn-driven samba tune featuring sunshine-y vocals from Nayanna Holley and glissando keyboard runs from Mendes; “Orpheus (Quiet Carnival),” a lounge-pop ditty that spirals along in a ’60s time warp; and a cover of Stevie Wonder’s “The Real Thing” fitted with a galloping tempo, staccato brass, and a fiery sax solo. Those seeking even more adventurous fare can pick up Bom Tempo Brasil Remixed, a companion disc that finds Paul Oakenfold and other prominent remixers putting their own spins on Mendes’ arrangements.


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