More Brazilian jazz from Monica Vasconcelos and band.
Lara Bellini 2004
With their second album NOIS 4 ('Us Four') recount their own poetic tales of Brazil and pay homage to the country's most enduring heritage, the people themselves ('Gente'): Brazilian Music as a popular, collective experience. They've even recordedit in Sao Paulo, to make it as close to the real thing as possible. Brazil comes across in all its warmth, delivered with the lightness of touch that is typical of Nois 4.
Carnivalesquegroovesalternate with melancholic songs; original tunes with absolute classics (Antonio Carlos Jobim, Vinicius de Moraes; Chico Buarque). One can dive into "Com a Perna no Mundo", and imagine what it is to be part of a Beija Flor parade (one of Rio's most prominent schools of samba).
With "Chá De Panela", Nois 4 pay homage to Brazilian jazz legend Hermeto Pascoal (listen out for the trademark accordion and triangle; the circular pulse; and a lyrical nod to the very core of the Pascoal philosophy: 'All things are musical'). Their collective journeytakes on a morepersonalhue with "Canto pra Cira". Monica Vasconcelos' voice blossoms with a sweet melancholy in this poignant tribute to her mother.
But it is the presence of guitarist Guinga, a legendary figure of the MPB scene (Brazilian Popular Music) that adds a hefty weight to the ensemble. His love and knowledge of both classic and popular Brazilian musical traditions is a precious gift to NOIS 4's sound. On the other hand, saxophonist Ingrid Laubrock's wonderfully subtle sopranotone is worth a mention, as well as her sensitive alto modulations that sweetly interweave with Monica's vocals.
This is an enjoyablealbum that brims with a love and understanding of Brazilian music.