Viajando Com o Som: The Lost '76 Vice-Versa Studio Sessions

Viajando Com o Som: The Lost '76 Vice-Versa Studio Sessions

by Vice Versa


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Now in his eighties, Brazil's Hermeto Pascoal continues to delight and surprise. Earlier in 2017 he released the universally acclaimed double-length No Mundo Dos Sons, the first album in 15 years to feature his longstanding performing band. Now, a few months later and just in time for the holiday season, Viajando Com o Som: The Lost '76 Vice-Versa Studio Sessions emerges from the ether of history as Far Out's 200th release. These recordings, captured at the peak of Pascoal's most experimental period, are the stuff of Brazilian music legend. The original recording sessions were the result of trying to capture the sound of a hybrid band that featured his "Paulista" rhythm section of the time -- Zé Eduardo Nazario (drums), Zeca Assumpção (bass), and Lelo Nazario (electric piano) -- with saxophonists Mauro Senise, Raul Mascarenhas, and Nivaldo Ornelas; guitarist Toninho Horta; and vocalist Aleuda Chaves, who had made musical magic live in concert at Teatro Bandeirantes. Pascoal booked two days at Rogério Duprat's Vice-Versa Studios in São Paulo with engineer Renato Viola, in an attempt to capture the "spiritual connection" the musicians experienced on tape. These four tunes were recorded live in the studio. This is raw, inspired electric jazz. Most of the first-take material remained in the final mixdown. After completing it, Nazario asked Viola to make him a machine-to-machine copy of the collected sessions. Pascoal's restlessness and prolific activity dictated that he move on to other projects -- the classic Slaves Mass would appear in 1977. The session was shelved and the master eventually lost. However, Nazario retained his copy; it languished on his studio shelves for more than 40 years. Have no fear, though; it has been painstakingly restored, and thoroughly remixed and remastered. "Dança do Pajé" kicks off with Rhodes piano, electric bass, sparse bells and triangles, and Pascoal's gorgeous flute playing. It is both mystical and pastoral, a long intro for what's to come in six minutes when a drum and piano vamp heads squarely into jazz-funk. "Mavumvavumpefoco" commences in abstraction before O Bruxo's melody introduces Chaves at her jazz-singing best atop the saxophones, flute, and a bumping bassline. Closer "Casinha Pequenina" is more than 26 minutes long and a virtual suite whose ensemble play and improvisation illustrate how confidently Grupo Vice Versa communicated during their short tenure. Its long, languid harmonic lines eventually morph into a burning modal Brazilian jazz-funk jam with all players (particularly Pascoal and Horta) on stun -- it rivals early Weather Report in kinetic energy and boundless creativity. The grooves are infectious; tight horn and keyboard lines become longer and more exploratory; they wind back on one another as the rhythm section pushes the boundary of the pocket without sacrificing it. Soloists emerge and then slip into the backdrop, suspending all sense of time as the work unfolds, revealing previously unexplored sonic territory. Viajando Com o Som is a gem, a true lost classic in the canon of Brazilian jazz, and evidence of Pascoal's well-deserved reputation as O Bruxo ("The Wizard").

Product Details

Release Date: 11/10/2017
Label: Far Out Recordings
UPC: 5060211503535
catalogNumber: 200
Rank: 82056

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Vice Versa   Primary Artist
Toninho Horta   Guitar
Raul Mascarenhas   Flute,Saxophone
Zeca Assumpção   Bass,Electric Bass
Nivaldo Ornelas   Flute,Tenor Saxophone
Hermeto Pascoal   Flute,Electric Piano,Saxophone,Voices
Mauro Senise   Flute,Saxophone
Lelo Nazario   Electric Piano
Zé Eduardo Nazario   Percussion,Drums,Voices,Soloist,Bambou
Aleuda Chaves   Percussion,Vocals

Technical Credits

Hermeto Pascoal   Composer,Producer
Renato Viola   Engineer
Howard Livingstone   Sleeve Notes

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