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  Bob Sinclar In The House
Rating: 4 out of 5 Rating: 4 out of 5 Rating: 4 out of 5 Rating: 4 out of 5
by Sterling McGarvey

It seems like France's superstars have reach a bit of a drought. Daft Punk's latest effort hasn't delivered like expected, and Dimitri from Paris is a little overexposed at the moment. Just when house heads questioned our Gallic friends' ability to deliver, Bob Sinclar returns from a lengthy absence to drop both an artist album, Africanism III and a triple disc effort for Defected's In the House series. Strangely, the only way to describe the album is by saying that it's unsurprisingly French. Yet, that's a compliment.

The first disc warms up with "Jealousy," by the (finally) white-hot Martin Solveig. A Jamie Lewis redux of Cerrone's "Not Too Shabby" follows up, which has a solid groove to it. Liquid People's disco-driven "Ice Cream Parlour" is one of the highlights of the first disc. With its disco-filtered sample and funky guitar licks, it's certainly one of the top tunes to drop this year. The midsection of the first disc takes on an Afro-Brazilian flair, which while good, feels like too much crammed together; it gives the tracks a certain faceless feel instead of creating standouts.

The horizon clears with a remix of that old stand-by, the Jungle Brothers' "I'll House You," which for any veteran clubber, feels de rigueur. This new tribal-feeling mix is a tad refreshing, though. Loco Dice's "Phat Dope Shit" as remixed by Saeed (formerly of Saeed and Palash) isn't quite as phat and dope as its title, but it leads beautifully into one of the top tunes of the year, Julian Jabre's "Swimming Places." It is that this point that the disc kicks into high gear; considering that it's a multi-disc set, it's appropriate for the first disc to really kick off so late in gear, but it certainly does. Next up to bat is Louie Vega and Mr. V's cover of KC Flightt's "Let's Get Jazzy," "V Gets Jazzy," which leads into the dramatic ebbs and flows of Africanism (read: Sinclar)'s "Samurai Theme." The disc dovetails with Sinclar's "Love Generation," which echoes Frankie Knuckle's "The Whistle Song" and a pinch of reggae thanks to Gary Pine of the Wailers. An acquired taste, but certainly an anthem nonetheless.

Disc two fires up in dramatic fashion with Mousse T's redux of Nuyorican Soul's "Runaway" and leads into a solid block of tunes, including Osunlade's spoken word-laden "Power to Conquer" and the conga-driven "Slipstream" by Spiritual Soul. The action takes a break from the heavily percussive house with a grooving track by George Duke followed by "Can You Move," by Modern Romance. The remaining standouts on the disc include Slow Supreme's chunky "Granada" and Jakatta's "Shimmering Stars (Joey Negro Re-Edit)," which is a track that has been produced and remixed by the same person under aliases. Of the tracks on the CD, "Shimmering Stars" has the quirkiest feel to it. With its synthesized accordions, African tribal chanting and driving bassline, it feels appropriate for a Bob Sinclar CD, yet it almost feels as though it would be in place in a pre-millennial progressive house set. Take that as you will regarding the evolution of house music halfway through the first decade of this new century.

The third disc, dubbed the Latin Lounge Mix is a tribute to all thing grooving and equatorial. Kicking off with François K's "Awakening" (previously heard on Bossa Mundo 2), the disc has a chilled-out feel to it. Featuring tunes by Salome de Bahia, Kyoto Jazz Massive, and Tom Y Joyce, the third disc is a wind-down from the barrage of tribal and Brazilian-flavored house that permeates the first two CDs of this set.

All in all, Bob Sinclar's contribution to the "In the House" series is a solid one. Those who aren't fans of tribal house or Latin-flavored tunes might not find much to enjoy here. But those in search of a solid box set to groove to and put on in the background will find themselves satisfied with this collection. A must-add compilation for any French house or Brazilian nu jazz aficionado's CD collection.

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Bob Sinclar In The House from Amazon.com Bob Sinclar In The House

Disc 1:

  1. Jealousy - Lee Fields
  2. Not Too Shabby [Jamie Lewis Goes Disco Mix] - Cerrone
  3. Ice Cream Parlour - Liquid People
  4. Play the World [Kenny "Dope" Remix] - Johnick
  5. Vazilando [Main Mix] - La Oreja de Van Gogh
  6. Quisiera
  7. Beat Goes On - Bob Sinclar
  8. Pressure Cooker - Banda Sonora Original
  9. Summer Moon - Africanism Allstars, Ben Onono
  10. I'll House You - Jungle Brothers
  11. House Ya Body - David Duriez
  12. Phat Dope Shit [Saeed's Shit Base Remix] - Loco Dice
  13. Swimming Places - Julien Jabre
  14. V Get's Jazzy - Louie Vega
  15. Samurai Theme - Africanism
  16. Love Generation - Bob Sinclar
Disc 2:
  1. Runaway [Mousse T's Jazz Funk Experience] - Nuyorican Soul
  2. Power to Conquer - Latina Cafe
  3. Slipstream - Spiritual South
  4. Body Theme - Next Evidence
  5. Brazilian Love Affair [Album Version] - George Duke
  6. Can You Move - Modern Romance
  7. Lacatush
  8. Funu - Dennis Ferrer
  9. Free [Louie Vega Dub] - Stephanie Mills
  10. Cerca de Mi - Raul Midón, Louie Vega
  11. Granada
  12. Shimmering Stars [Joey Negro Medusa Mix] - Jakatta
  13. Imbalaye - Africanism
  14. Queixume [Maw Mix-Main Vocal] - Tom & Joy
Disc 3:
  1. Awakening - Barbara Mendes
  2. People from the Sun & The Earth
  3. It's a Beautiful Thing - Jersey Street
  4. Bahia [Acoustic Mix]
  5. Voce Abusou - Michel Fugain,
  6. Dindi - Tom & Joy
  7. Wintersong - Africanism
  8. Festejar
  9. Nacer Do Sol - Kyoto Jazz Massive
  10. Meditation - Tom & Joy
  11. Esquisse - Tom & Joy
  12. Moon Bossa - The Mighty Bop

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