São Paulo Underground, “The Love I Feel For You” (2013): Something Else! sneak peek

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A fourth LP is in the offing for that avant-Chicago/folk-Brazilian amalgam, the São Paulo Underground. Rob Mazurek (cornet, electronics), Guilherme Granado (keyboards, electronics) and Mauricio Takara (drums, percussion, cavaquinho, electronics) are back after 2011’s widely acclaimed Tres Cabeças Loucuras, an album that is only one shade of the incredibly multi-faceted Mazurek. Having led four different ensembles on four different albums since then, he’s now turned his attention back toward his cohorts from the capital city of Brazil; they toured stateside last year and apparently made another record, Beija Flors Velho E Sujo, after the tour.

Their label Cuneiform Records have let a handful of truncated cuts stream out on the internet via Bandcamp and early indications are that this is more of the strange but strangely appealing alchemy of the bright, festive Brazilian grooves, the experimental Chicago jazz and the lo-fi circuited effects and reverb drench sonic terrain that Mazurek has gotten quite good at molding.

“The Love I Feel For You Is More Real Than Ever” is the one track officially leaked out in its entirety, and brings those three worlds into the same place by smashing them together. Mazurek leads a joyful, bouncy melody that could have been a song onto itself, and even then there’s a rough, garage band sonority to it. But there’s always a darker side with the Underground, and it emerges just a little more than a minute in. Mazurek repeats a new theme over an increasingly messy electronic/percussion wad of sound, and before long his ostinato is that only thing keeping the song tethered to the ground at all. But it’s enough.

One song won’t be enough, though, to satisfy SPU fans. There will surely be more fascinating twists in store coming from Beija Flors Velho E Sujo.

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Beija Flors Velho E Sujo will be released on June 4, from Cuneiform Records. Feature photo credit: Jason Marck, courtesy of Cuneiform Records.

S. Victor Aaron

S. Victor Aaron

S. Victor Aaron is an SQL demon for a Fortune 100 company by day, music opinion-maker at night. His musings are strewn out across the interwebs on jazz.com, AllAboutJazz.com, a football discussion board and some inchoate customer reviews of records from the late 1990s on Amazon under a pseudonym that will never be revealed. E-mail him at svaaron@somethingelsereviews .com or follow him on Twitter at https://twitter.com/SVictorAaron
S. Victor Aaron
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