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Thursday, June 22, 2006

Tropicalia: A Brazilian Revolution in Sound

Posted on Thu, Jun 22, 2006 at 4:00 AM

Tropicalia: A Brazilian Revolution in Sound
Label: Soul Jazz
Length: LP
Media: CD
Format: Album
WorkNameSort: Tropicalia: A Brazilian Revolution in Sound
The claim on the outer packaging of this disc ' 'The first CD to bring together all the key artists involved in the movement� ' is technically correct, as tracks by the sorta-tropicália Jorge Ben and the out-there-tropicália Tom Zé were missing from the excellent (and heretofore unchallenged) 1999 Universal compilation, Tropicália Essentials. But that's not what makes this compilation exceptional; by including a marvelously written and meticulously researched set of liner notes (the booklet tops out at 52 pages!), this set puts some realistic perspective on a somewhat deified musical scene. (The movement was agonizingly premeditated, it only lasted a year and, yes, its principals loved bossa nova and MPB far more than you would think.) To be sure, the songs included here are mind-blowing, and for the curious who have yet to hear the Afro/Latin/Bahian/post-bossa/psychedelic melange that is tropicália, the concise selection of top-tier cuts by Os Mutantes, Caetano Veloso, Gilberto Gil and others ' combined with the wealth of information the liners provide ' is possibly the best introduction one could have to this oft-discussed music.

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