All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

3

Sao Paulo Underground: Cantos Invisíveis

Troy Collins By

Sign in to view read count
Democratically led by Chicago-based sound explorer Rob Mazurek, São Paulo Underground has been defying genre conventions and musical boundaries for almost a decade. Originally formed with percussionist Mauricio Takara and keyboardist Guilherme Granado during Mazurek's sojourn in Brazil (2000-2005), the ensemble's membership has undergone a subtle change on its fifth album with the addition of Swiss-born multi-instrumentalist Thomas Rohrer, a frequent collaborator of Mazurek's.

Translated from Portuguese as "invisible songs," Mazurek says of Cantos Invisíveis, "the way we make our music, always masking it in some kind of way, a disappearing through layering and sound manipulation ... we create atmospheres that cause form and melody to disappear, and to reappear." Although myriad styles materialize repeatedly throughout the album, the overall effort feels cohesive and suite-like in execution, unified by a raw, music vérité aesthetic.

The episodic opener, "Estrada Para o Oeste," is indicative, as it vacillates between numerous genres, from hypnotic amplified dirges and phantasmagoric post-bop excursions to a Carnival-esque celebration of clattering percussion and harmonized chanting. Shorter tunes subsequently unveil a variety of moods: "Violent Orchid Parade" evokes a riotous street party; "Lost Corners Boogie" grooves on glitchy motorik funk; and the ebullient "Olhaluai" regales as one of the album's catchiest songs, while "Of Golden Summer" is the most unabashedly lyrical.

The session concludes with "Falling Down From the Sky Like Some Damned Ghost," which keenly encapsulates the band's manifold strengths: Mazurek's soulfully abstract, efx-laden cornet; polyrhythmic thickets of percussion; psychedelic swirls of Moog, Mellotron and assorted synths; even plangent vocals can be heard below dense layers of electro-acoustic interplay. At just over a quarter of an hour, the set's most expansive inclusion closes the date with the same visionary sensibility that has defined the band's oeuvre for the past ten years.

Track Listing: Estrada Para o Oeste; Violent Orchid Parade; Cambodian Street Carnival; Lost Corners Boogie; Desisto II; Fire and Chime; Olhaluai; Of Golden Summer, Falling Down from the Sky Like Some Damned Ghost.

Personnel: Rob Mazurek: cornetta, Mellotron, sintetizzatore, Moog, OP-1, percussioni, voce; Mauricio Takara: batteria, cavaquinho, elettronica, Moog, Werkstatt, percussioni, voce; Guilherme Granado: tastiere, sintetizzatore, sampler, percussioni, voce; Thomas Rohrer: rabeca, flauti, sax soprano, elettronica, percussioni, voce.

Title: Cantos Invisiveis | Year Released: 2016 | Record Label: Cuneiform Records

Tags

Related Video

comments powered by Disqus

Jagoda's Dream

Jagoda's Dream

Sao Paulo Underground
Tres Cabecas Loucuras

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Cantos Invisíveis

Cantos Invisíveis

Cuneiform Records
2017

buy
Cantos Invisíveis

Cantos Invisíveis

Cuneiform Records
2016

buy
Cantos Invisiveis

Cantos Invisiveis

Cuneiform Records
2016

buy
Beija Flors Velho E Sujo

Beija Flors Velho E...

Cuneiform Records
2013

buy
Três Cabenças Loucuras

Três Cabenças...

Cuneiform Records
2012

buy
Tres Cabecas Loucuras

Tres Cabecas Loucuras

Cuneiform Records
2011

buy

Related Articles

Read Walk The Walk CD/LP/Track Review
Walk The Walk
by Mark Sullivan
Published: May 21, 2018
Read Vol II CD/LP/Track Review
Vol II
by Geno Thackara
Published: May 21, 2018
Read Months, Weeks and Days CD/LP/Track Review
Months, Weeks and Days
by Glenn Astarita
Published: May 21, 2018
Read Space Is The Place CD/LP/Track Review
Space Is The Place
by James Fleming
Published: May 21, 2018
Read Poetry in Motion CD/LP/Track Review
Poetry in Motion
by Liz Goodwin
Published: May 21, 2018
Read Murals CD/LP/Track Review
Murals
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: May 20, 2018
Read "Generations" CD/LP/Track Review Generations
by Jerome Wilson
Published: August 22, 2017
Read "Straight Forward" CD/LP/Track Review Straight Forward
by Paul Rauch
Published: January 14, 2018
Read "Setembro" CD/LP/Track Review Setembro
by Roger Farbey
Published: September 26, 2017
Read "Glass" CD/LP/Track Review Glass
by Nenad Georgievski
Published: February 10, 2018
Read "All Melody" CD/LP/Track Review All Melody
by Phil Barnes
Published: March 23, 2018
Read "Public Access / Headline / Crossings" CD/LP/Track Review Public Access / Headline / Crossings
by John Kelman
Published: March 25, 2018