Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Tropicalia INVASION!

Gal Costa – Nao Identificado
Caetano Veloso – Nao Identificado

Gal Costa – Lost in Paradise
Caetano Veloso – Lost in Paradise

I’m really glad that I got into Brazilian music before it became the realm of the trendy revitalists at Pitchfork media. In fact, I really wish they hadn’t reviewed that re-issue and given it such a high score: this is going to drive a million hipsters into a record buying frenzy and will definitely raise the prices on this shit. Once again the indie crowd proves to be a thorn in my side. Anger against an easy target aside, Tropicalia has been ripe for a revival ever since Kurt Cobain (and later Of Montreal and Cunninlynguists) name dropped Os Mutantes. Hell, even MF Doom has jumped on the Brazilian bandwagon if his recent beats are of any indication and let’s not forget Madlib and Diplo’s regular trips to the land of all things booty: they brought back lost grooves and bad bass-house respectively. With names like that, don’t you want to get in on the fun?

Luckily, I’ve got y’all covered with an interesting MP3 update as we take a look at two songs covered by two of Tropicalia’s most important artists: Caetano Veloso and Gal Costa. I could spend a whole day writing about the historical and musical importance of this guy and this gal (no pun intended) but that’s what Allmusic is for. Suffice to say that they were an item and created some of the best music of the 60’s t never reach your parents ears. Unless your prarents were Brazilian I guess. Oh, and they also recorded it in jail while being harassed by their country’s military government: and those British and US hippies thought they had it hard…

But enough back story, what’s up with the songs? Written by Veloso, these were used on their early albums in radically different ways. Nao Identificado for example is a rocking, psychedelic guitar driven affair with low-key vocals in the hands of Veloso. Costa on the other hands flips it into an organ driven balad thanks to her sweet delivery and soulful instrumentation. Lost in Paradise’s versions don’t quite differ as much as the previous song in mood but the subtle differences in instrumentation and vocal switches make for interesting distinctions, not to mention a great listening experience no matter which one you prefer.


Anonymous matteo said...

well... also "the empty boat" interpretations would be perfect in this page... both spaced-out, but Caetano very expanded and subtle, Gal very crazy and noisy...

2:31 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home