The Ipanemas are Brazil's great soulful musicologists whose music always reflects -- no matter how beautiful, joyous, or meditative -- the complex issues of race and class in Brazilian society. The longtime and modern day purveyors of "Samba Cancao," or "music of the poor," Afro Bossa is a small departure for the Ipanemas while remaining completely true to their mission and vision. The attempt was to make a record that sounded like the duo's (Wilson Neves and Neco)'s very organic first record -- they've now released three in 40 years -- while combining it with all of the musical innovations in Afro-Caribbean music that they had learned since then. What it amounts to is simply the Ipanemas: gorgeous, rootsy, gentle, and moving samba with many elements from African and Eastern folklore woven into their sound. This is not a fusion recording of any kind, but one that takes into account the "Samba Cancao" of music lovers from all over the African diaspora. It's easily the most personal recording they've ever done, and its organic textures are loaded with gentle, aesthetically beautiful and soulful grooves, and elegant folk chants in a very modern setting. Recommended tracks are "Suspeita," "Espraiado," "Bambui," and "Afro." This disc is one of its kind, and yet another amazing chapter from Far Out recordings: a label who have yet to miss their mark with over two dozen releases.
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AllMusic Review by Thom Jurek