This album has had a somewhat confusing release history, appearing as it did amid a flurry of activity by Jobim (including his work with Frank Sinatra) and bouncing between several labels since its first release in 1967. Made up of instrumentals as well as songs (all of the latter in English), it was a superb showcase for the melodic aspect of Jobim's art, though the material, like so much of Jobim's work during his explosive first decade of international recognition, represented something of a work in progress, a fact borne out by the subsequent reworking of the stunning closing number, "Zingaro," as "Retrato Em Branco E Preto." Claus Ogerman's musical direction offers a mix of influences, ranging from Dom um Romão's drumming to the presence of the first violinist of the New York Philharmonic, all combining to sympathetic effect. The post-2000 CD remasterings also offer superb sound and excellent annotation.
AllMusic Review by Bruce Eder