Fernando Aragones aka Animal Ventura is an artist born in Brazil and he began to get some attention when he started playing in Sydney, Australia. In 2009 he toured Brazil, Europe, UK and New Zealand. After establishing a fan base he flew to the states to make his debut album Forrest St. I enjoyed this album immediately for a number of reasons. There is a good amount of instrumentation but it doesn't feel crowded.The horns in particular sounded exceptional. His vocals were also notable upon first listen.
Throughout the album he attempts a couple of different styles. There is a very distinct singer/songwriter vibe. Some of it comes like Jack Johnson-esque by the side of patio playing acoustic to beautiful ladies while other songs were more subdued with a lounge-y, jazz vibe. I preferred the latter.
He starts off with the exceptional “No Gravity” - lounge-y jazz with a hint of reggae. I love the groove. So, so smooth. It’s catchy and will certainly melt someone's heart. I also thoroughly enjoyed “Slave Of Love (Do It Twice)” but it has a very different vibe. The song is on the verge of rocking out with some funk and has a lot more energy. It still works and the horns are still a focal point.
“Muddy Water” has too much of a standard singer/songwriter vibe to me. It sounded too familiar. That being said the vocals are solid. “Animal” was much more to my sensibilities. He gets back into a smooth groove that felt like silk. “Lights On Feat. Laura Stitt” seemed out of place after “Animals.” It has an overt pop sound that sounded like a different artist all together. There are also female vocals which sounded good. “Go” and “ Domingo (Cut It Loose)” sounded connected and like minded between the funk, rock and jazz. I can’t say the same about “Same As” which sounds like a country song. A good country song but a country song nonetheless.
Unequivocally, my main and only gripe with this album is the dichotomy between the styles. It’s actually kind of interesting that he seems to have two sides rather than multiple sides. I definitely had my preference but I’m positive that is debatable since all the song are well written.
There is no doubt in my mind that he is a great musician. His overall vision is uneven but I’m certain with the right team behind him he can create a more singular sound.
Overall, this is not an album you want to pass up. There is plenty here to appreciate.
We are dedicated to informing the public about the different types of independent music that is available for your listening pleasure as well as giving the artist a professional critique from a seasoned music geek. We critique a wide variety of niche genres like experimental, IDM, electronic, ambient, shoegaze and much more.
Are you one of our faithful visitors who enjoys our website? Like us on Facebook