Not too many musicians will get away with it: releasing a CD that not even reaches the length of thirty minutes. Leave it to Vinícius Cantuária to do so. It must have got something to do with the continuous high quality of his music and the element of surprise. For an extended bio of Vinícius I would kindly like to direct you to our review of his album Cymbals (2007).
Vinícius Cantuária (Manaus, 1951) is based in New York since 1994 in a successful attempt to get rid of the pop star status that he reached in homeland Brazil. In New York he stayed true to his love for Bossa Nova. Vinícius shaped the music in a minimalistic way to give it his very own unique sound. Each of his albums feature a special approach. His whispering guitar style and his soft voice are the main links to bossa nova.
On Índio de Apartamento the variety of the guest musicians is amazing. Pianist Mario Laginha (Lisbon, Portugal; 1960) adds beautiful keyboards to the opening track “Humanos.” The track makes you sit down and quietly enjoy the silence of the music. Next guest is pianist Ryuichi Sakamoto(Tokyo, 1952). By Brazilian music fans he’s known for his fantastic participation in the Morelenbaum2/Sakamoto ensemble, dedicated to the music of Jobim. On “Moça Feia” Ryuichi literally plays with the composition, he does that in a dissonant way. Towards the end of the song he makes clear how he successfully changed the color of the arrangement. He’s also featured on “Acorda.” Jazz star Norah Jones (New York, 1979) surprises with her presence on “Quem Sou Eu.” She dedicates her modest piano-playing completely to the gentle mood of the song. “This Time” forms a moment of shameless relaxation. Grammy Award winning singer-songwriter Jesse Harris (New York, 1969) joins in on this track with his catchy voice. The wonderful Liminha (São Paulo, 1951) is guest on bass.
We also hear guitarist Bill Frisell. Longtime friend Bill Frisell (Baltimore, 1951) is also featured with his characteristic guitar style on two more tracks. One of those is the closing “Pé na Estrada”; another beautiful moment on this strange album. Dadi Carvalho is also on guitar in this track.
It’s really amazing how much happens on this short album. Vinícius Cantuária is a true master in bringing music back to its essentials. He does that in a way that sounds so natural that one almost forgets how complex the music really is. Yes, it’s a shame that the album only lasts for half an hour, but on the other hand with a content like here one absolutely can’t complain!
Índio de Apartamento
Naïve NJ621811 (2012)
All compositions by Vinícius Cantuária, except where noted.
- Moça Feia (Vinícius Cantuária – Leoni)
- Acorda (Vinícius Cantuária – Arnaldo Antunes)
- Um Dia
- Quem Sou Eu – w/ Norah Jones
- This Time (Vinícius Cantuária – Jesse Harris)
- Chove Lá Fora (Tito Madi)
- Índio de Apartamento
- Pé Na Estrada (Vinícius Cantuária – Evandro Mesquita)