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Various Artists
PURE BRAZIL, VOLUMES 1-9
(UNIVERSAL LATINA)

Anyone who has traveled to Rio de Janeiro will tell you that the streets teem with the rhythms of the waves and the luscious air of nearby Sugarloaf mountain. Whatís more, in Brazil, African rhythms, European harmonies, and American jazz intermingle to create a music like no other. The continuing Universal Latina Pure Brazil series (nine discs thus far) only hints at Brazilís musical wealth, but what a feast it is, with recordings by the relatively unknown Roberto Menescal, Tamba Trio, Moacir Santos, Jorge Ben Jor, Nara Leão, Wanda Sá, and Doris Monteiro as well as the expected tracks by Tom Jobim and Bebel Gilberto.

The Girls from Ipanema and Quiet Nights of Quiet Stars and Instrumental Bossa Nova (this last a particularly good collection) focus on í60s bossa nova in all its guises, but Pure Brazil also branches out into more eclectic and contemporary styles. Tribal Bahia explores the joyous and experimental timbalada style pioneered by Carlinhos Brown; Samba Soul Groove covers the infectious pop juggernaut of Jorge Ben Jor and his followers; Samba Social Club is a tribute to the old-schoolers who hold the samba flame aloft. Each offers its particular invitation to dig deeper into Brazilís golden vaults.

By Ken Micallef


Issue Date: December 24 - 30, 2004
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