The Mood Mosaic Collection Vol.1-14 (1997-2011)

Vol. 2: Barnie's Grooves succeeds because it delivers a solid mix of soundtrack and easy listening cuts (plus the occasional soul track) that blend together nicely because they all have strong funk and jazz elements. Several of the tracks are studio-band covers of popular film and television themes: Henry Mancini takes the already-potent The Streets of San Francisco theme and transforms into a relentlessly grooving monster that switches back and forth between horn-driven funk and keyboard jazz without missing a beat, and Bobby Forrester does an interesting jazz version of the theme from Sanford & Son that uses the original theme's melody as a springboard for some tasty keyboard improvisations. There are also several strong original soundtrack cuts: Sammy Davis, Jr.'s classic "Baretta's Theme" finds that usually elegant crooner getting down over a surprisingly funky track driven by horns and a discoish bassline, while Alexandro Jodorowsky's "The Desert Is a Circle" is an epic, multi-part instrumental that covers everything from easy listening to jazz-funk as it restates its central, Ennio Morricone-styled theme in a variety of ways. Mood Mosaic, Vol. 2: Barnie's Grooves also features the occasional straightforward soul cut; the best of these is Jimmy Smith's "Root Down," a classic jazz instrumental whose throbbing bassline and scratching rhythm guitar riffs were later sampled by the Beastie Boys. This diverse batch of tracks hangs together nicely thanks to their similar reliance on jazz and funk mannerisms, making the disc a fun and consistently engaging listen from start to finish. As a result, Mood Mosaic, Vol. 2: Barnie's Grooves is one of the best volumes in this series and a treat for lounge fans who like their lounge music funky.--- Donald A. Guarisco

vol. 3: After two volumes' worth of straightforward lounge tunes, the Mood Mosaic compilation series pushed in a more adventurous direction on its third installment. Mood Mosaic, Vol. 3: The Sexploitation makes for a highly amusing listen because it is dedicated to erotic music; that is, sleazy-sounding lounge music and soundtrack cuts used for the love scenes in exploitation movies. As one might expect, several of these cuts incorporate orgasmic female moaning into their sonic attack: "Continental Exchange" is a Sounds Nice cut that paces its funky combination of wah-wah guitar and swirling organ licks with the sound of a woman's amorous-minded heavy breathing, and Ray Brown's amusingly titled "Coming and Going" is a guitar-led slice of light funk that prominently features the sound of a woman driving herself into an erotic frenzy while the band jams along behind her. Other cuts present a different but no less sexy take on the album's concept: "Good Time Woman" by Dan Seepers Soul spices up its horn-drenched soul by throwing in a female chorus that romantically coos along with the melody and De Giafferi's unhinged "Sado Maso" features a man raving in French about the titular subject while sweet female voices back him up. Despite these amusing tracks, Mood Mosaic, Vol. 3: The Sexploitation doesn't entirely succeed because some of its cuts fail to fit the concept. Clay Pitts' "Caribbean Sunrise" is a pleasant bossa nova track that lacks the erotic elements of the other tracks and Lil Louis' "French Kiss" is a techno track whose purely electronic style makes it stand out like a sore thumb amongst the band-driven tracks that surround it. However, the majority of Mood Mosaic, Vol. 3: The Sexploitation works and the rare nature of most of its tracks ensures that it will appeal to hardcore lounge fanatics.--- Donald A. Guarisco

Vol. 4: After a couple of volumes that pursued specific themes, the Mood Mosaic lounge series returned to a grab-bag approach on its fourth installment. Thankfully, it is a good grab bag. Mood Mosaic, Vol. 4: Les Yper Sound contains everything from bossa nova and jazz to synth-spiked soul and psychedelic pop, but it works nicely because the cuts are all catchy and share a pleasant, easy listening feel despite their differing genres. Highlights in the jazz vein include "Sound Machine," a smooth Oliver Nelson cut whose stately, horn-led melody periodically breaks for some nice electric piano solos, and an elegant, sax-driven version of "The Look of Love" by Stan Getz. In the psychedelic arena, some of the best cuts are Peter Thomas' organ-fuelled instrumental reworking of "Jumpin' Jack Flash," and "Bond Street," an Enoch Light cut that spices up its peppy, easy listening version of this Bacharach instrumental with bleeping synthesizers and some wild stereo-separation effects. There are also plenty of tracks with a bossa beat, the best being Connie Francis' "Bossa Nova Hand Dance," a tune that finds the vocalist slickly crooning in both Spanish and English, and an instrumental version of "Mas Que Nada," by John Scott, that replaces the vocal melody with a combination of slick organ leads and jazzy horns. There's also the occasional fun novelty; the most amusing is Gary McFarland's "Bloop Bleep," which features the vocalist complaining about the sleep-thwarting sound of a dripping faucet while the band grooves along behind him in a Latin jazz style. In short, Mood Mosaic, Vol. 4: Les Yper Sound is an eclectic batch of delights, but they all flow into each other because all the cuts benefit from the tight, pop-flavored arrangements and the slick production that defines the best lounge music. As a result, Mood Mosaic, Vol. 4: Les Yper Sound is a worthwhile spin for anyone who enjoys lounge music in all its diverse forms.--- Donald A. Guarisco

Vol. 5: 1997 release, the fifth in this series of campy remakes of cult TV & film themes from the '70s. Subtitled 'Supervixens- A '70s Modal Collection', it features 11 tracks fromEuropean porno flicks of the day. The cover contains female nudity. 1997 Yellowstone Records release. Full color pictureCD. After putting out four volumes of lounge-oriented music, the compilers of the Mood Mosaic compilation series did an abrupt about-face on their fifth installment. Mood Mosaic, Vol. 5: Supervixens -- A '70s Modal Collection is radically different from its predecessors because it abandons lounge entirely to concentrate on disco. However, this doesn't mean it features tracks like "Heart of Glass" and "Y.M.C.A."; instead, Mood Mosaic, Vol. 5: Supervixens -- A '70s Modal Collection focuses on a series of obscure, lengthy tracks that will probably be known only to veteran clubgoers. Sadly, obscure doesn't always mean lost gem and this is the case with the often-inconsistent track listing of this compilation. The first half of the album is loaded down with run-of-the-mill disco tracks: Marta Acuna's "Dance Dance Dance" suffers from a repetitive melody and a weak, wobbly-sounding lead vocal, while Hiroshima's "Lion Dance" is a snoozy bit of jazz-disco that relies too much on the novelty overdubbing koto solos over a throbbing dance beat. Despite these frequent dull spots, patient listeners will be rewarded with a few solid disco gems if they can make it to the second half: Black Devil's "Follow Me" combines rhythmic programmed synthesizer and live drums in a way reminiscent of Giorgio Moroder, and Sylvia's "The Lollipop Man" is a sexily voiced and charmingly over-the-top tribute to television detective Kojak. Unfortunately, choice moments like these pop up too infrequently on this compilation and are surrounded by too much dancefloor filler. As a result, Mood Mosaic, Vol. 5: Supervixens -- A '70s Modal Collection can only be recommended to disco completists and will probably leave the lounge fans who bought the series' other volumes cold. ~ Donald A. Guarisco

5 komentarzy:

  1. Wielkie dzieki, wspaniala skladanka.

  2. links are dead. please, could you update?

  3. Why don't you read the blog carefully? We are closed - there will not be any re-ups and new posts anymore. We were asking you for symbolic donation but you don't give us any chance for exist - we have no money for the records and energy to continue this blog.

  4. I'm sorry to hear that you had to shut down your site--I just found it today and even a cursory look tells me it's something I would've really appreciated. Anyway, hope you're well.