Here is the only proper way to listen to electronica duo Thievery Corporations' latest studio album "Saudade": pop the album into your most expensive stereo system. Turn the lights in the room to as dim as a setting as you can get. Make yourself an old fashioned cocktail, preferably a martini. Better yet, make two. Sit back in your favorite armchair and let the music wash over you. This is bossa nova, baby. Just let it happen.
Thievery Corporation, funny enough, is not primarily a bossa nova group. They deal mainly in the realms of electronic and club music. But their roots actually lie in the "new trend" music style, and this is the place that they have returned to for "Saudade".
Don't be afraid to embrace what is a break from Thievery Corporation's recent music style. TC's Rob Garza and Eric Hilton are masters of being wildly inventive in the studio and making audio gold from breaking away from their standard positions.
What "Saudade" does best is deliver the sound that long-term Thievery Corporation fans know best, threaded together by the classic bossa nova techniques. Garza and Hilton's years of experience is clearly stitched through each and every one of the album's thirteen tracks. You can hear that they are long time fans of the music genre as they pay homage to the standards of bossa nova's long history.
Several tracks on "Saudade" break out splendidly from the pack. "Depth Of My Soul" is outrageously swanky with a noir twist, highlighting the voice of Shana Halligan who shines with each and every note. The titular track, "Saudade", embraces TC's signature guitar work and creates through music the deeply melancholy yet beautiful state that the song's title roughly translates into.
Lou Lou Ghelichkhani is a vocalist with a history of working with Thievery Corporation and is heavily featured on this album. Some of her tracks are also some of the best of the whole collection, especially "Firelight" and "No More Disguise". Her voice is so wonderfully suited to bossa nova, it's no wonder that Ghelichkhani and the Corporation have worked together so many times.
Thievery Corporation has been around for nearly thirty years, constantly reinventing their own sound to the delight of their loyal listeners across the globe. With "Saudade", they have dipped back into their more jazz and bossa nova roots with astonishing success. This album is a dream, an orchestrated world of smooth sounds and silky voices weaved together to tip the listener back into another place, one that looks a lot like the era that the TV series "Mad Men" takes place.
Recently, Thievery Corporation participated in a Reddit Ask Me Anything thread, where website users could ask them questions rapidfire about pretty much any subject. One user asked the group about why they named their latest album "Saudade". Their answer was that they "loved Brazilian music when [they] met, and that is an over arching theme throughout the music and lyrics. That's probably the main thing in our mind that makes the music beautiful." In their new album, "Saudade" proves that Thievery Corporation has excelled in creating beautiful music that would make any Brazilian music aficionado happy.