A pleasant but hardly essential addition to the Nascimento discography.
Jon Lusk 2008
Released in the UK just over two months after the lushly orchestrated and rather fine Milton Nascimento & Belmondo collaboration, this new disc matches the 'muse of Minas' with long-term colleagues the Jobim Trio. The recording was the aftermath of a concert they did to celebrate what would have been the 80th birthday of the late Antonio Carlos Jobim – one of the founding fathers of the bossa nova style/movement, and the father and grandfather of Paulo and Daniel Jobim respectively.
So, this mixture of compositions – mostly by Antonio Carlos Jobim plus three from the Nascimento songbook– appears in time to be considered part of this year's '50 years of bossa nova' celebrations. With much smaller arrangements (generally just drums, bass, guitar and piano) and a looser, more informal feel than Milton Nascimento & Belmondo, it's an undemanding but also less distinguished recording.
It is nice to hear Nascimento revisiting his classic 1972 album Clube da Esquina with the opening Tudo Que Você Podia Ser and Cais, although only the latter is more appealing in its updated form, with an extended romp on piano by Nascimento in part two – tantalisingly short on the original. The following O Vento by the late, great sambista Dorival Caymmi seems tailor-made for Nascimento’s soaring voice, accentuated with percussive atmospherics by drummer Paulo Braga. Another highlight is Trem De Ferro, which finds Nascimento chanting ''Café Con Pão'' in time to a chugging railway rhythm.
The rest of the album settles mostly into languid bossa territory, with the Jobims occasionally joining in on or leading the vocals. That's probably Daniel on his own mellow Dias Azul, and his dad trading verses with Nascimento on Brigas Nunca Mais, although the sleeve notes don't credit them accurately enough to say for sure. It's all a bit too sleepy, with the tunes tending to bleed into one another at times and a pervading sense that these old friends aren't going anywhere outside their comfort zones, which is perhaps what gave the Belmondo collaboration its edge. A pleasant but hardly essential addition to the Nascimento discography.