Uncut - p.1244 stars out of 5
- "These two albums were revolutionary, integrating Hawaiian and African rhythms into lounge bar arrangement alongside birdcalls and ambient noises."
Includes liner notes by Martin Denny.
All tracks have been digitally remastered.
EXOTICA 1/EXOTICA 2 was originally released as 2 separate LPs in 1957 and 1958 respectively.
Personnel: Martin Denny (piano, celesta); Jack Shoop (alto flute, baritone saxophone); Arthur Lyman (vibraphone, marimba, xylophone, percussion); Roy Harte, Harold Chang (drums, percussion); August Colon (congas, bongos); Gil Baumgart (percussion).
Audio Remasterer: Alan Douches.
Liner Note Author: Martin Denny.
Recording information: Capitol Recording Studio (12/??/1956-06/19/1957); Scamp Studios, Hollywood, CA (12/??/1956-06/19/1957); Webley Edwards Studio, Honolulu, HI (12/??/1956-06/19/1957).
Unknown Contributor Role: August Colon.
Arrangers: Gil Baumgart; Martin Denny.
Exotica as a genre didn't last much beyond 1964, but it didn't disappear without leaving behind a few marks of genius, one such being the work of Martin Denny. His EXOTICA, and the follow-up recording, EXOTICA II, were postcards from a world far beyond suburban, post-war America.
Denny's music staved off a little of the nation's cultural hunger. He was also one of the finest band leaders and arrangers around, one of maybe three from the Exotica genre to have displayed enough skill and irony to avoid scorn from pop music historians.