Music in Brazil heroically persevered in the face of an oppressive military dictatorship that lasted between 1964-1985, and manifested in a vast spectrum of defiant MPB, samba, tropicalia, and beyond. The last few decades have shone light on the obscurer end of the country’s musical scope from that period up to the present day, with credit due to the likes of Joe Davis (Far Out Recordings), Gilles Peterson and Mr Bongo, all of which have one way or another granted airtime to the nation’s rich musical tapestry in the last 30 years, going beyond the worldwide imports of works by Airto, Gilberto Gil, Sergio Mendes, Joao Gilberto etc. But still many pastures remain under-exposed, and even Mr Peterson has professed his neglect of the periphery Rush Hour affiliate John Gomez has compiled for Music From Memory – the Amsterdam based label, whose releases persistently draw responses along the lines of ‘wow! What the hell is this?!’
After commencing with Piry Reis’ solemn, humidified bossa, the recognisable components of Brazilian music (albeit the Portuguese language) become increasingly shrouded and veiled by trans-planetary electronic and avant-garde elements. The mesmeric ambient percussion of Fernando Falcao in ‘Manhecer Tabajara (À Alceu Valença)’ should entice a highly recommended extended listen into the artist’s wider catalogue, and its duality of electronic effects with roots percussion is a prevalent feature through much of the compilation and a key the fluidity of an expansively varied, far reaching collection of music.
Standouts include ‘Kiu’ by Andrea Daltro which presents a rewired twist of a track she originally recorded with Sexteto Do Beco in 1980, and it’s unveiling thankfully solves one of many mysteries from MFM boss Jamie Tiller’s enchanting ‘Shared Dreams’ mix. Keeping with the Music From Memory aura of other-worldly, soothing but never soporific sounds, just one instance in Outro Tempo steps aside from tranquility, with the comparatively brasher but phenomenal sop-sax led cosmic dub of Os Mulheres Negras’ ‘Mãoscolorida’.
Described by Gomez as the Brazilian Frank Zappa, Egberto Gismonti crops up more than once on the credits and poses an obvious link to the better explored factions of Brazil’s music. Otherwise Outro Tempo opens doors, unveiling the unknown but inherently fascinating. And while exploring the very art of variety that typifies Brazilian culture, a cohesive and carefully tweaked album is the finished product. Like everything else to have surfaced in the Music From Memory story so far, we’re brought into a musi-verse we never knew existed but now can’t do without.
Outro Tempo is out now order a copy via Music From Memory.
1. Piry Reis – O Sol Na Janela
2. Nando Carneiro – G.R.E.S. Luxo Artesanal/O Camponês
3. Cinema – Sem Teto
4. Os Mulheres Negras – Só Quero Um Xodó
5. Fernando Falcão – Amanhecer Tabajara (À Alceu Valença)
6. Anno Luz – Por Quê
7. Andréa Daltro – Kiuá
8. Os Mulheres Negras – Mãoscolorida
9. Bené Fonteles – O M M
10. Carlinhos Santos – Giramundo
11. Priscilla Ermel – Gestos De Equilíbrio
12. Carioca – Branca
13. Marco Bosco – Sol Da Manhã
14. Maria Rita – Cântico Brasileiro No. 3 (Kamaiurá)
15. Marco Bosco – Madeira II (Mãe Terra)
16. Priscilla Ermel – Corpo Do Vento
17. Luli E Lucina – E Foi
Discover more about Music From Memory on Inverted Audio.