Edu & Tom
If that old cliche "a match made in heaven" didn't exist, it would have to be created to describe this album, as it unites two of Brazil's greatest melodists ever. The generation that came right after Bossa Nova produced no few masters of melody, such as Marcos Valle, Dori Caymmi and Francis Hime; but, much as I dislike absolutes, Edu Lobo is to me the finest of the lot, and the one who comes closest to Jobim (of whom nothing need be said) in range, sophistication and just plain beauty. Small wonder that Vinicius de Moraes, who, together with Jobim and Joao Gilberto, defined Bossa Nova, was also Edu's frequent partner - two of the songs in this album are by Edu and Vinicius. Small wonder that one of those, Canto Triste, was recorded, with English lyrics of her own which Vinicius himself regarded as the best versions ever of his original words, by Lani Hall, the US singer who had the (here I go absolutizing again) most perfect feeling for Brazilian music, who also recorded (and wrote the English lyrics for) another of this CD's selections, Pra Dizer Adeus. And no wonder at all that Tom and Edu blend so perfectly in every aspect: listeners who are not familiar with the songs may be hard pressed to guess which song is by whom. Edu sings Tom's Chovendo na Roseira as if he had written it, Tom joins in in Edu's uptempo Vento Bravo (with *both* playing piano) as if it had come out of his Matita Pere album. The selections? Gem after gem. If you have an ear for beauty, don't miss this one. --an Amazon reviewer
Edu Lobo (Millennium
If you are shopping for light bossa Jobim style, this is not the album you want. On the other hand, if you have ever dug Egberto Gismonti, Gil Evans, Milton...meaning, something different,innovative, a little dissonance, you must get this Edu Lobo album. Hermeto Pascoal's intervention is also amazing. --an Amazon reviewer
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Liner Notes: "That Lobo's music is something special becomes very clear from the opening moments of 'ZANZIBAR'. In the introduction, that odd bass sound is Neto hitting the Fender with a drumstick; the 12-string guitar enters, than Lobo sings an angular, wordless melody, overdubbing his voice four times.
Gradually the theme gains in intensity. As Mendes said, it's
not quite bossa nova yet it has a rhythmic and melodic essence that is
essentially South American.
Gracinha, who replaced Lani in Brasil 66,sings in unison with Lobo on some tracks. At times they are joined by Paschoal's flute,which he plays with occasional echoes in a style originated by Roland Kirk.
What impresses me more than any other aspect of the album is the infinite variety achieved within the borders of Lobo's imagination. The vocals: solo,duo,multiple; English, Portuguese, vocalese. The added instruments: a cello section to reinforce the mood of his exquisite "CRYSTAL ILLUSIONS" (from a play Lobo scored in Brazil) and the bittersweet "Hey Jude"; and, on the latter, Norman Herzberg's bassoon, the buzz-flute, and the strings. The infinite "tristeza" of Lobo's voice and guitar, and the graceful cello solo by Ray Kramer, on "To Say Goodbye". The ingratiating eight-bar baião rhythm in Paschoal's composition "Sharp Tongue". The sinuous upsweep of the melodic line in "Casa Forte". The spirited rhythms of "Jangada", whose lyrics, Lobo tells me are a call to victory in a raft race.
This is the new Brazilian-American-universal music, the post-Jobim generation that has developed out of the sambas of a decade ago. Its rhythms, and more particularly its harmony, clearly have their roots in the era of "One Note Samba" and "Desafinado". "We need that harmonic foundation", says Lobo. "The basement must be strong, or the house will fall down."
Sergio Mendes has said: "Lobo is the most important figure in the new wave of Brazilian artists. I take great pride in presenting this album."
We are indeed in Mendes's debt for advancing the career of
a great young talent who will continue to evolve, to blend the beauty of his
native idioms with newer concepts that grow constantly broader. With men like
Lobo among us, the musico-ecologists need not worry: our air is growing purer
every day. --Leonard Feather
Edu Lobo's website