Continuing on the Road of Success
The last studio recording from Kid Abelha, Surf, dates from 2001. The sound was dominated by the use of electronic percussion. The following Acústico MTV album showed that the group sounds more mature without those rather clichéd used electronics. Something that was already noticeable on their successful semi-acoustic Meio Desligado album (1994). On Pega Vida the band seems to have found a musical compromise. Real instrumentalists perform the pleasant pop music this band produces for 24 years now. Maybe it’s the influence of the English producer Paul Ralphes, who also worked with Skank, Gabriel O Pensador and O Rappa (among others). The former stock exchange operator had his influence on the Acústico MTV album and now he has signed as the producer of this album. He’s also allowed to play bass and percussion on the majority of the tracks.
The concept, however, is still the same. Kid Abelha keeps on making easy listening pop music. All but one song are from the hands of the writing Kid Abelha duo Paula Toller and George Israel. The singer comes with the lyrics and an idea about the music, which George Israel polishes on his acoustic guitar. From there on the songs start to get shape. It’s a formula that has worked for decades, so why would one change that? This time it resulted in songs that spin playfully around in your head the way any good pop songs should. No risks are taken, neither with the instrumentation. A friendly organ (Humberto Barros) buzzes enjoyably with the melody line. Drummer Kadu Menezes gently accentuates the rhythm, while guitarists Bruno Fortunato and George Israel (who’s less featured on his sax) tastefully play with chords. Paula Toller’s disarming voice does the rest. A winner combination on lovely songs like the title track “Pega Vida,””Fala Meu Nome,” “Duas Casas,” “Strip-tease” and the slow “Mãe Natureza.” The latter two songs refer to songs from the artist Kid Abelha definitely finds inspiration from: Rita Lee (“Mamãe Natureza” from Rita’s 1981 album Saúde and “Strip-tease” from her 1983 album Bom Bom). The album closes quietly with a beautiful ballad “Órion” on which Paula Toller controls her voice remarkably well. Her voice seems to feel better in ballads as years grow.
The only non Toller/ Israel composition is the reggae “Será Que Eu Pus um Grilo na Sua Cabeça?” which features a nice horn section. All this makes the Kid Abelha album a most enjoyable one, and without doubt one of their better ones. There is a strong influence of British pop music from the 70ies (also in the sexual slanted lyrics), upgraded to the needs of contemporary middle of the road pop music. Kid Abelha is continuing on the road of success and it still doesn’t hurt.
Mercury Universal 60249881539 (2005)
All songs by Paula Toller & George Israel, except where noted.
- Eu Tou Tentando
- Pega Vida
- Por Que Eu Não Desisto de Vc
- Será Que Eu Pus um Grilo na Sua Cabeça? (Guilherme Lamounier – Tibério Gaspar)
- Peito Aberto
- Fala Meu Nome
- Mãe Natureza (Querência)
- Duas Casas