Almost 30 days into the new year and I had yet to decide which records blasted the dust out of my bones in 2012. Quite a difficult task considering the year was filled with veterans shouting they're alive by making high quality/very sellable albums. Plus the 90's revival. However, many newcomers (up-and-comers, too) spared no creativity and came up with beautiful acts of music. Not easy to narrow down to only six but let's say I'm on a Nick Hornby + 1 phase. In my pseudo-humble opinion, here are the 6 albums that charted high on my list:
El Efecto - Pedras e Sonhos
When it comes to praising nationality traits in music as if it's nothing short from cult-like obligation, the majority of bands tend to board on boredom and tiring sonic territorial marking. The beauty of this record lays on balancing that out with boldness and hints of tradition without losing the group's personality.
Léo Brasil e a Máquina - Quanto Mais Livre Melhor
Hailing from the unknown, I present Quanto Mais Livre Melhor, by Léo Brasil e a Máquina. To say little about a lot, this record is what a love child bred barefoot in Rio by Thievery Corporation and Madlib would sound like. The brilliance of any instrumental effort falls highly on whether or not the music speaks regardless of words. Léo Brasil achieves such state in a sweet, classy fashion. Enjoy.
Silva - Claridão
This one is a mind twister. Not because it's brain-melting awesome. It isn't. Claridão resembles a creative mix-tape dubbed under one single voice and, as any grade A mix-tape, it rises and falls more often than not. Silva ranges from Beirut-esque vibes to discreet flirtations with electronic music. Dangerous grounds.
However, he pulls it off. Some say the record is minimalistic though such claim barely begins to touch it.
I resisted this album for far too long.
BNegão e os Seletores de Frequência - Sintoniza Lá
In an era where Brazilian hip-hop is taken up - mainly loosely - by pretty much whoever feels angry our misunderstood whilst wandering around stone jungles and crowded beaches, old schoolers BNegão e Os Seletores de Frequência's Sintoniza Lá is a rescue boat that will take you to the lands of quality "urban" music.
Macaco Bong - This is Rolê
Heavy. Dirty. Awesome.
Tulipa Ruiz - Tudo Tanto
Tulipa is a rather interesting character, a sure pump of fresh air in modern times. In Tudo Tanto, she keeps up the good work, carefully slipping away from the ever-changing concept of Brazilian Popular Music. Not too complex to sound cocky and not too simple to disguise vintage outfits. Not too much, not too little, right on the spot. A solid work by an impressive artist.