Vinicius Cantuária

Sol Na Cara

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This is a great pop release with good compositions and performances, very respectful to the Brazilian music-rich tradition (as evidenced by the melody of "Samba Da Estrela," clearly inspired by Ari Barroso's "Baixa Do Sapateiro"). Vinícius Cantuária, for some decades (since O Terço, in the '70s) active in Brazilian pop music, performs (co-produced with Arto Lindsay) his own compositions with respectable partners such as Caetano Veloso, Chico Buarque, and Ryuichi Sakamoto (his only accompanist in the entire album). Cantuaria carefully avoids the traps of an easy appropriation of Brazilian music elements condemned to be to mere exotic ornaments for commercial clichés, as it is the pop mainstream in Brazil today. His subtle interpretation and compositions clearly spell B-R-A-S-I-L, not as some old, stuffed tradition, but as a celebration of a strong and living culture that can coexist side by side with other world cultures. There are lots of low-profile synthesizer effects in the background, which seem to represent a "modernizing" intention; it doesn't add to the artistic result, but that's a minor complaint. The album is worth it.

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