October 2000 Film Music CD Reviews

Film Music Editor: Ian Lace
Music Webmaster Len Mullenger

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Various Sources and Artists
Woman on Top
  SONY SK 89279   [48:58]

According to the blurb we received with this album (in its promotional edition with no documentation, other than the sexy picture above and the names, in Spanish only, of the numbers performed), Woman on Top was premiered at the Cannes International Film festival in May and is scheduled for release in America on September 22nd. The film is about Isabella (Penelope Cruz) "a sultry enchantress born with the special gift of melting the palates and hearts of men everywhere. When she decides to break free from her rocky marriage and the stifling kitchen of her husband's restaurant in Brazil, she spirits off to San Francisco in pursuit of her dream of a real culinary career…"

The soundtrack comprises a pleasing blend of songs that include the bossa nova, samba, forro, choro, forro, baiâo and other styles, from the 1940s to the present day and features numbers performed by Baden Powell, Xavier Cugat and others as well as recordings by the popular Brazilian singer Paulinho Moska and a special remix by the acclaimed new group Bossa Cuca Nova.

All the numbers delight, but I would mention just the atmospheric 'Berekere' that seems to evoke the wild cries of the rain forest, the intoxicating rhythms and the romanticism of 'Cinzas' and 'Falso Baiana'; and the Latin sounds of the 1940s in 'Aquarela do Brazil' in which one can imagine Carmen Miranda emerging through the palms.

Ian Lace



Ian Lace


Reviews from previous months

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