Far Out Presents: Friends From Rio Project 2014
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Friends From Rio is a fresh take on Far Out's idea of recording tunes from Brazil for the dance floors of London.
It was one of the first projects the label endeavoured upon way back in 1994 and after 20 years, Far Out is back with this new release of varied, yet consistently danceable Bossa grooves, Brazil funk and scorching batucadas. It's just the kind of music that has defined the label over its two-decade history, which makes it the perfect way to mark 20 years of Far Out Recordings!
In keeping with the very ethos of Far Out, The Friends From Rio Project cements the bonds originally welded by a young Joe Davis, when he set off to Rio, in search of the mysterious sounds of Brazil. Coming from the heart and soul of Rio de Janeiro, the album features some of the most accomplished legends of Rio's musical underground, including Alex Malheiros, Hyldon, Aleh, Robertinho Silva, Sabrina Malheiros and a host of other Far Out favourites.
Consisting of all original material (with the exception of a blistering version of Jorge Ben's timeless 'Mas Que Nada'), this is a reunion of old friends and that's exactly how it sounds, with celebratory whoops and whistles littering the album, it really does sound like a party. Every track is in some way reminiscent of the kind of music Joe Davis and friends were playing on the underground club scene in London, back at the time of the first Rio Project. While principally a Brazilian record, lofty disco synths and funk basslines take tracks 'So Resta A Porta','Veneno' and 'Fogo No Chao' beneath the lights of a spinning mirror ball, while samba batucadas and a fiery brass section keeps 'Casino Bangu' decidedly under the Rio sun. The album also explores deeper territory with 'Batucada Bidu' providing a stint of intense, driven samba percussion beneath the dreamy, hypnotic chanting of Robertinho Silva.
Nostalgia balanced with vitality is inherent throughout, punctuated by the artwork, which is based on the bottle cap of the 60s/70s Brahma Guarana. Yet while the album is something of a reunion, finally managing to work with renowned Brazilian artists Hyldon, Aleh Ferreira and others, was an opportunity Far Out could not pass up on. It's collaborations with legends like these, with the flare of Azymuth's Alex Malheiros, the direction of label boss Joe Davis and the production of Daniel Maunick that make the Friends From Rio project, the truly special record it is, just like the two Rio projects before it.