Sunday, March 27, 2016

Re-introducing Brazil's Nomade Orquestra

The 10-piece Nomade Orquestra came together in São Paolo in 2012, though they could just as easily have emerged fully formed into our world from a mystical land where spaced out jazz soundtracks daily life and the passing of time is rhythm and groove… such is their elusive, ethereal yet highly accomplished and deeply funky otherness. On April 22, Nomade Orquestra’s self-titled debut album – originally issued in Brazil back in 2014 – will get much wider distribution via the UK-based Far Out label on heavyweight vinyl along with an extended 13-track digital release.

Effortlessly weaving through the disparate sounds of Brazil’s diverse musical diaspora, the group describe themselves and their shared project as ‘the point where different musical expressions and strands meet and interact in a unique way.’ From funk and soul to Afrobeat, Ethio-grooves, dub and hip hop, their sound remains firmly anchored in the world of jazz while taking off to the cosmic stratosphere and incorporating electronic elements, alongside traditional Brazilian styles along the way. If you're thinking 'São Paolo's answer to the Souljazz Orchestra,' you're not that far off.

In line with the bands’ musical and spiritual influences, adopted from age old lineages of the global east, the album’s opening track ‘Samurai’ kicks off the psychedelic party with the strike of a gong. Dreamlike synths, Marcos Mauricio’s arresting piano and André Calixto’s beautifully expressive tenor saxophone shed the first light on this enchanting incarnation of global roots music. ‘Sonhos de Tokyo’s hypnotic grooving bassline is complimented with psychedelic guitar riffs and ominous synth washes, building a sound both tranquil and unsettling. ‘Morning Birds’, features the talents of Otis Trio’s Beto Montag, who brings his deft Marimba playing to the party for an Afrobeat-bent banger that further highlights the varied and deep roots of Nomade’s musical influences. Here's a performance of Morning Birds.

Album closer ‘Garuda’ finds Nomade Orchestra in a more contemplative, mood. Bringing together soaring Chinese flutes, Hawaiian style fuzz guitar, snake charming saxophone and some world class Oud playing from guest musician Luciano Sallun, the track is a spiritual wonder.  It's a fitting conclusion to a highly sensory journey that recalls the spiritual jazz musings of Herbie Hancock and Pharoah Sanders while sounding like the Brazilian take on Taoism. Making music like none other in Brazil, or the rest of the world. Here they are playing Garuda below.

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