Simply the Best by Bellamy Brothers and DJ Ötzi
The love affair between the Bellamy Brothers and Europe is as longstanding as it is mutual: the Bellamys, who enjoy a large and loyal overseas following and tour internationally on a regular basis, have long been fluent in European culture. Younger brother David is also a longtime lover of Euro-pop whose own ultra-hooky compositions sometimes possess an international flavor. Their successful 2010 venture with Swiss rock star Gölä has led to a similar teaming, this time with Austrian pop star DJ Ötzi. Ötzi has an affection for simple, crowd-pleasing tunes and classic American oldies like the ones that are threaded into Howard and David’s kids-of-the-baby-boom tapestry, making this a very compatible, if not strongly country-centered, collaboration.
Simply the Best offers remakes of half a dozen choice, pop-skewing Bellamys favorites plus a smattering of mostly vintage Top 40 and country hits, all embroidered with easy-to-digest electronica. DJ Ötzi shares the mic on his version of the 1962 pop chart-topper “Hey Baby” and alternates his gritty, genial voice with the duo’s still-limber and warm vocals throughout the disc.
While the famed Floridians aren’t exactly whistlin’ Dixie this time around, stalwart fans who embrace the brothers’ diverse back catalogue as a big, beautiful body of work aren’t likely to hold it against them.