This important meeting of clarinetist Paulo Moura and violonista (acoustic guitar) player Rafael Rabelo occurs in a pan-cultural setting. Paulo, an older musician schooled in the traditional circles of choro, modern classical music, and gafieira orchestras (which received have a great deal of jazz influences); Rabelo, a young musician who unfotunatly died at an early age, a violão virtuose also experienced in rodas de choro, but with a particular approach to guitar that was strongly influenced by flamenco music (which is evident on the very first track, a medley of "Ronda" and "Sampa," two unofficial anthems for the city of São Paulo, an old and a modern one). "Chorando Baixinho," a choro classic by Abel Ferreira, admits no liberties under the artists' vision: is delicately delivered in the truest tradition, including Villa-Lobos' "Bachianas Brasileiras" passages. Moura's original "Domingo No Orfeão Portugal" is also performed with no "alien" influences; just the old, swinging samba with choro baixarias de violão (violão basslines typical of the choro genre), sometimes in pizzicatto. Baden Powell's "Violão vadio," an ad-lib rendition, also is completely free from influences other than the Brazilian tradition. Even the complex harmonies found when the violão backs the clarinet solo are derived from classical tradition incorporated in Brazilian music since the beginning of the century, not from jazz, as is usually believed. Ary Barroso's classic "Morena Boca de Ouro," (recorded with success by João Gilberto) receives a balançante (swinging) samba treatment. Moura's original "Tempos Felizes" is a romantic valse, very faithful to the choro spirit, with touches of modern classic harmonization and jazz clarinet soloing. The immortal Pixinguinha classic "1x0" receives a pure, typical, jumpy, swinging, and fun choro treatment, only with Rabelo's flamenco attacks bringing other influences into the mix. "Tarde de Chuva," another Moura original, is a beautiful choro theme delivered with samba backing, with baixarias only at its ending, a particularly modern introduction and a jazzy ending. Jobim's "Luíza" is very much to-the-letter and restrained in its melancholic rendition. The master of the gafieiras Severino Araújo was the choice for the album's closing with his typical "Um Chorinho em Aldeia." It's a hot, swinging fast-paced choro suited for the duo's virtuosity. This album is an opportunity for catching the true spirit of choro, which, although not in his most typical face (which is with the backing of the regional) shows a modern yet faithful face.
AllMusic Review by Alvaro Neder