Compiled by AOR aficionado and consummate musician Ed Motta (called "The Colossus of Rio" on the promo sticker), this is the fifth release in the Too Slow To Disco series. And let's hope it's not the last. Spoiler alert: Motta knows how to pick 'em.
The series is promoted on its website as "a compilation series of Late 70s Westcoast Yachtpop you can almost dance to. Compiled by Dj Supermarkt." Includes a 16 page booklet with extensive liner notes with Motta's thoughts on each cut. Dig!
This thing was just released and my copy appeared on the doorstep last night. Let's rip some cellophane and give this thing a spin. I just glanced at the tracklist and the duplication of tracks from Motta's stellar AOR mixes One and Two are minimal (if you haven't heard those or Motta's 2013 album AOR, please do so ASAP).
Peak on the US Billboard Top 200 chart: Yet to be determined.
Tracks (and first impressions):
- Filó Machado - Quero Pouco, Quero Muito (1983). Tasty horn licks, choice chord changes, funky bass line - dayumm, son. What a fantastic opener. Where ya been all my (adult) life?
- Sandra Sá - Guarde Minha Voz (1983). As good as anything Earth, Wind & Fire was putting out at the time. Reminds more than a little of Cheryl Lynn's Got to Be Real (and that's a good thing).
- Altay Veloso - Débora (1986). If this wasn't being sung in Portuguese, I'd have sworn it was early 80's George Benson. Santo Vaca! I'm having high school flashbacks listening to this cut and I've never heard it before. How is that even possible?!?
- Junior Mendes - Copacabana Sadia (1982). The best disco cut not to appear on the Saturday Night Fever soundtrack? In the liner notes, Motta calls this "a classic New Year's Eve track." Duly noted.
- Don Beto - Renascendo Em Mim (1978). Like nothing I've heard before yet like everything I've heard before. As if that makes any sense.
- Lucinha Turnbull - Toda Manha Brilha O Sol (1980). The Latin-tinged AOR song you've been missing and you didn't even know you needed it. This may be the most expensive CD I've ever purchased simply because now I'm going to buy every album represented on this disc.
- Guilherme Arantes - Coisas Do Brasil (1986). Motta calls this tune "Donald Fagen-esque." I wouldn't go that far, but I'd travel pretty close.
- Carlos Bivar - Maré (1984). Promoted as a super rare track, this comes from a privately pressed 7" from Motta's own collection. So smooth and then the CP-80 solo comes in and takes it up a notch.
- Biafra - Leão Ferido (1981). The first mid-tempo ballad of the compilation and worth the wait. A low-key verse then step on the accelerator with the horns at the chorus - sweet mama! Very much like Jarreau tunes of that time.
- Santa Cruz - Mais Uma Chance (1984). I was just thinking that the one thing missing from this compilation is some sweet Rhodes piano. And then this tune hits. Void filled. If you were itching for "more cowbell," this tune will scratch that itch, too.
- Jane Duboc - Se Eu Te Pego De Jeito (1982). Outstanding voice, great horn parts, funky bass. What's not to like?
- Cassiano - Rio Best-Seller (1991). An early '90s soul track that's reminding me of early '80s Tower of Power. Note: I have no idea if this was actually a best-seller in Rio.
- Carlinhos & Soninha Queiroz - Pra Você (1982). See track 5.
- Gelson Oliveira & Luiz Ewerling - Acrodes E Sementies (1983). Another rare record - not yet listed on Discogs. It's the first cut I'm indifferent to. I don't want to skip it, I just don't love it like I did the 13 tracks that preceded it.
- Zeca Do Trombone - Rota-Mar (1983). Another cut in the same vein as early-80's Jarreau. While he doesn't match Jarreau's vocal tone, he makes up for it with a sweet trombone solo.
- Roupa Nova - Clarear (1982). A live cut? Compared in liner notes to Toto! I'm not hearing that, but I'm liking what I'm hearing on this guitar-led cut. Seventies-licious.
- Kiko Zambianchi - Estréia (1987). More New-Wavish pop than AOR, but suitable for this compilation thanks to some nice chord changes at the chorus and a sax solo.
- Brylho - Jóia Rara (1983). A Portuguese Haircut 100 knock-off? Daddy like.
- Riata Lee & Roberto - Atlântida (1981). The arrangement is a little heavy on the drum machine, but that's my only complaint. If this had appeared on Bossa Nova Hotel, it wouldn't have surprised me.
Personal Memory Associated with this CD: Hearing it for the first time this evening before placing the CD in my truck until at least October. If there's every been a perfectly-timed compilation released for summer listening, it's either this or some beauty I've yet to hear.