Apr 14 2007

Bebel Gilberto: Momento


Quietly Moving On


MomentoOn Momento Bebel Gilberto changes the mood a bit, compared to what we heard so far from her.  Without losing contact with the rest of the world, the charming singer features some of Brazil’s most popular music styles.

The concept is still the same: an acoustic setting mixed with electronics accompanies the soft sometimes whispering voice. Bebel continues to feature her own music more and more, showing she’s not only a good performer, but also a gifted composer. The opening title track “Momento” forms a link with Bebel’s previous (second) self-titled solo album (2004). The following “Bring Back the Love” shows Bebel’s intentions to play with traditional Brazilian rhythms. Switching between English and Portuguese, the song works its way to the samba rhythm used by the legendary carnival samba schools. In a very contradictory way, the soft voice scats the most typical and upfront rhythm of the carnival samba percussion. Also featured in this song is the eccentric band Brazilian Girls. Keyboard wizard from that band, Didi Gutman already worked with Bebel on her previous album.  The pleasant voice of their vocalist Sabina Sciubba spices up “Os Novos Yorkinos,” the cd’s most radio-friendly feature, with a clear, yet very natural sounding samba rhythm. Bebel GilbertoThe title of the song of course refers to the legendary Novos Baianos, the band that built the bridge between Brazilian music with western pop and rock in the early 1970’s. The acoustic bossa nova intro by guitarist Pedro Baby leads us into a typical Bebel Gilberto jewel. She stretches her voice a bit more on this track, as she does on “Caçada.” This forró is written by Bebel’s uncle Chico Buarque (brother of her mother Miúcha). It’s great how the song evolves into a true forró fest, including the flutes (pífanos) and various percussion instruments that characterize the music style from Brazil’s northeast so much (like the zabumba and triangle). Jorge Hélder is hired to take care of the bass lines and Celso Fonseca is on acoustic guitar. On “Tranquilo” the Orquestra Imperial from Rio de Janeiro is featured in a salsa flavored tropical party song. Also noteworthy is “Cadê Você?” which again can be described as a typical Bebel Gilberto song: contemporary medium up-tempo with playful percussion. The album fizzles out with a beautiful ballad (“Words”) performed in a duo setting with Masa Shimizu on the acoustic guitar.

Thus Bebel Gilberto delivers a pleasant third solo project, perfectly linking up with its predecessor. She proves to be a fruitful element in the scene of world music, using elements from her own three worlds: Brazil, New York and England.

You can visit Bebel Gilberto to learn more about this album.



Bebel Gilberto
Ziriguiboom/Crammed Records ZIR30 (2007)
Time: 42’35”


  1. Momento (Bebel Gilberto – Masa Shimizu – Mauro Refosco)
  2. Bring Back the Love (Bebel Gilberto – Didi Gutman – Sabina Sciubba)
  3. Close to You (Bebel Gilberto – Guy Sigsworth)
  4. Os Novos Yorkinos (Bebel Gilberto – Didi Gutman – Sabina Sciubba)
  5. Azul (Bebel Gilberto – Guy Sigsworth)
  6. Caçada (Chico Buarque de Holanda)
  7. Night and Day (Cole Porter)
  8. Tranquilo (Kassin)
  9. Um Segundo (Bebel Gilberto – Masa Shimizu)
  10. Cadê Você? (Bebel Gilberto – Guy Sigsworth)
  11. Words (Bebel Gilberto – Masa Shimizu – Erich Baptista)