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Gilberto Gil


Warner Music Brasil. 505144228920




With ;
Caetano Velosos.
Cassia Eller.
Chico Buarque.
Ivete Sangalo.
Maria Bethania.
Marisa Monte.
Milton Nascimento.
Rita Lee.
And many others.

Brazilian Portuguese evokes the breathy tones of Astrid Gilberto and the Music of Antonio Carlos Jobin.

The soft sibilants create an intimate communication even when the Music is rattling like a machine-gun!

The title is misleading.

I expected Duets but as the line-up suggests there are a lot more than two people involved and there are so many influences in this compilation that after expecting the usual Bossa Nova the kaleidoscopic range of the CD is startling in its breadth.

There are 14 tracks and they all have a distinct identity and if you like Brazilian Music but are tired of flattened 5ths each time there is a ‘crunch’ chord, then this is an aural cleanser.

Track 1 gives us some idea of the quality of the engineering and balance, which is excellent, but I suspected that in the last track, (14), I detected a squeal of feedback...

Considering the overall quality, this has to be a mixer’s joke!

Track 2 has a distinct tinge of Reggae.

Track 3 conjures up a hot sandy beach viewed through a heat haze generated by the piano backing and muted trumpet.

Track 4 changes direction and we arrive somewhere near Trinidad with a touch of Ska...

Track 5 returns to Brazil via a guitar fanfare that turns into a riff.

Track 6 has a wider band sound with a nice bass.

Track 7 weaves sinuously with a lush solo flute backed by synths. through a steamy jungle of key changes.

Track 8 concentrates the ear by a harder vocal line and tight rhythm.

Track 9 returns to Reggae but with some surprising sounds from the synths.

Track 10 prances into the Carnival decked dressed only in enthusiasm.

Track 11 starts by conning us into thinking we might be going to hear a version of "Take 5" and then shoots into a recitative with an African flavour.

Track 12 is reminiscent of round backed Portuguese guitars.

Track 13 seems to have come from Tunisia.

Track 14 has a bent sax, and by now the thought of feedback is inconsequential because we have returned to the Carnival.

My only regret with this CD was that I couldn’t understand the beautifully enunciated lyrics.

Adrienne Fox


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