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Gloria Estefan The Very Best Of Review

Compilation. Released 2006.  

BBC Review

The collection is filled with synth-heavy high energy pop songs.

Helen Groom 2007

Gloria Estefan's greatest hits collection spans a recording career starting with Miami Sound Machine in 1980 and contains all the songs you would expect to see here, plus a few surprises from the years she's been absent from the top of the charts. This retrospective largely bypasses her Spanish songs, concentrating on the international English language hits, including "Reach", the official theme song for the Atlanta Olympic Games in 1996.

The collection is filled with synth-heavy high energy pop songs, some of which - "1-2-3", say, or "Bad Boy" - now sound dated. But the Cuban samba drum beats, brass section and synth hooks of "The Rhythm Is Gonna Get You" still make you want to be on a Caribbean beach sipping on a Pina Colada.

More up-to-date offerings are "Coming Out Of The Dark", featuring a backing choir and a rousing chorus, which charts Gloria's recovery from a near-fatal crash involving her tour bus, and "Wrapped", which provides a welcome change in style and pace from the rest of the collection. Also included here to bring the album bang up to date is Mylo's "Doctor Pressure", a 1995 UK hit featuring a sample of Dr. Beat.

Estefan has certainly left a legacy of Latin music in the charts, having penned hit songs for artists including Jennifer Lopez and Shakira, and winning five Grammy Awards as an artist in her own right to date.

While her successful and long recording career cannot be detracted from, this is an album from which you'd want to pick the highlights, rather than sit through 20 Latin pop synth-laced tracks, some of which deserve to stay in their 1980s resting place.

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