Memories, Chronicles and Declarations of Love

Memories, Chronicles and Declarations of Love

by Marisa Monte
     
 

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Those who fell under the spell of Rose and Charcoal, the 1994 breakthrough by Brazilian singer Marisa Monte, were largely persuaded by her perfectly matched sultry looks and soft, sexy voice -- an instrument capable of both achingly beautiful bossa novas and unexpected delights like her cover of the Velvet Underground's "Pale

Overview

Those who fell under the spell of Rose and Charcoal, the 1994 breakthrough by Brazilian singer Marisa Monte, were largely persuaded by her perfectly matched sultry looks and soft, sexy voice -- an instrument capable of both achingly beautiful bossa novas and unexpected delights like her cover of the Velvet Underground's "Pale Blue Eyes." But surprise! More than merely a captivating singer, Marisa Monte has emerged as a visionary producer and sonic auteur. Her Memories, Chronicles, and Declarations of Love, a mix of songs that oscillate between Brazilian carnival rhythms and '70s-style AM rock, reads like a continuation of Carlinhos Brown's Omelete Man, which she produced. Or better, like the answering voice of a love duet. Taking notes from international avant-gardists such as Arto Lindsay (who produced Rose and Charcoal and co-produced this album) and Andres Levin (who assisted on Monte's A Great Noise) Monte has allowed the almost naïve lilt of her earlier work to go edgy and knowing: Behind the boards and in front of the microphone, she's something of a Brazilian Brian Wilson. Squeals and blips abound, Lindsay's squalling guitar and the basso profundo vocals of Arnaldo Antunes contribute to the intriguingly off-kilter sounds. "Amor I Love You," with its overdubbed choirs, flugelhorns, and complete absence of drums is a home-recording fanatic's dream. When she does let the rhythm hit, Monte favors dank, sluggish drums that sound like rhythm tracks from a lost Wings album. Paired with the occasional fuzzed-out guitar, some of Memories suggests Lenny Kravitz on a tropical vacation. Next to the glitz of most Brazilian pop -- and most American radio fare -- Monte's affecting snapshots of love, muted like Polaroids or super-8 home movies, are intimate declarations one and all. As entrancing as Rose and Charcoal is, Memories hits on something grittier than just another beautiful Brazilian singer's album -- although it is that, too. Taking charge of her sound and material, Marisa Monte aims deeper, finding tiny treasures beneath the already perfect surface.

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Alvaro Neder
On this album, the always correct Marisa Monte preferred to stick to pop grooves, instead of the strong adherence to Brazilian rhythms heard in some of her previous albums. There are exceptions, though. "Abololô" is an exquisite rendition for a beautiful melody in a typical Northeastern modal scale (Lydian b7), which sounds pretty exotic, haunting in a sad piano backing, and shocking with the expectation of a full-steam percussive regional, representing a welcome expansion of the tradition. Also in the same vein, "Para Ver As Meninas," a wonderful samba by Paulinho da Viola, receives a treatment where typical cavaquinhos and cuícas coexist with Jaques Morelembaum's cello and a stylized percussion. Nelson Cavaquinho/Guilherme DeBrito's "Gotas de Luar" gets a straightforward samba rendition where Monte's sensitive voice is backed simply by a traditional samba violão and jazzy guitar counterchants. In an album dedicated to love, accordingly, one can find the romantic ballads "Amor I Love You," which has an excerpt of Primo Basílio (Eca de Queiroz) read by the former Titãs Arnaldo Antunes, "O Que Me Importa," and her "Gentileza." Also, the romantic song "Perdão Você" and the romantic Olodum (is there such a thing?) "Tema de Amor." The rest of the 13 songs are in medium tempo funk/soul or Olodum-like.
Time Magazine
Considered one of the most accomplished young song stylists in Brazil, [Monte] imbues samba with modern cool...

Product Details

Release Date:
08/15/2000
Label:
Blue Note Records
UPC:
0724352708529
catalogNumber:
27085
Rank:
124502

Related Subjects

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Marisa Monte   Primary Artist
Marc Ribot   Guitar
Dan Reed   Violin
Joey Baron   Drums
Greg Cohen   Bass,Strings,Acoustic Bass
João Donato   Piano
Jeanne LeBlanc   Cello
Sandra Park   Violin
Laura Seaton   Violin
Mary Wooten   Cello
Gene Moye   Cello
Sarah Seiver   Cello
Sharon Yamada   Violin
Phil Myers   French Horn
Elizabeth Dyson   Cello
Lisa Kim   Violin
Ilene Moon   Cello
Fiona Simon   Violin
Shelly Woodworty   English Horn

Technical Credits

Marisa Monte   Producer
Arto Lindsay   Producer
Greg Cohen   Arranger
Mark Batson   keyboard arrangements
Giovanni Bianco   Art Direction
Marcelo Olinto   Photo Assistance
Cury   Composer

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