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World Music CD Reviews Europe

Trombo Combo

By Michael Stone
Published January 5, 2007

Swedish Sound Deluxe
Bolero Records

From Bolero Records (home of “some of the world’s greatest recording artists”—although you’ve never heard of them—and “your source for breathtaking and passionate music,” which might be anything) comes the impossibly “unique blend of Nordic jazz, mainstream pop and Latin rhythms” of Sweden’s Trombo Combo, who “send several excitable messages through their music.” Prime candidates for the dreadful annual exercise known as the Eurovision Song Contest, they traffic in soporific sampling, remixing, electronic noodling, breathless ’60s-girl-group-inspired vocals, and unabashed pop recycling (“the sensual bolero-inspired version a la Shirley Bassey” of David Bowie’s “Let’s Dance,” the putative “sensual heat” of “I Can’t Get You Out Of My Head,” the “seductive phrasing” of Britney Spears’ “Hit Me Baby One More Time,” the “jazzed-up pop elements” of ABBA’s “The Winner Takes All”). Per their irrepressible publicist, Trombo Combo is pure “genius and joy,” a “recipe for musical success” whose “fluid delivery, upbeat approach, and laid-back moods” comprise instant nostalgia itself—a perfectly metastasizing replica of no known original.