We have reviewed a lot of albums here at The Equal Ground but I'm pretty sure we haven't covered a tribal Afro-South American sound that combines jazz, samba and blues the way Nilza Costa does on her recent release entitled Revolution Rivoluzione Revolução. Sometimes on an album the instruments will support the vocals and with such a powerful voice as Costa you might assume that would be the case here but it isn't. You could remove her vocals entirely and you would still be left with a percussively heavy, instrumentally rich album that you would have no problem enjoying. The fact that her vocals and the music seem equally as important to the overall sound makes the listening experience almost overwhelming in a good way.
One of the best examples of this is “Soberania Popular,” which has such a wonderful spectrum of sounds that it’s hard to know what to concentrate on. The guitar sounds cool but so does that fiddle but wait that percussion is incredibly good. The song is festive, really festive. It makes you want to celebrate whether you have anything to be happy about or not. “Africa” has a little bit of funk and a lot of soul while “Blues de Yansa” displays the excellent technical mastery by the musicians.
Those strings on “Pedra do Pedro” are golden but it also has an exceptional vocal performance by Costa as well. The instruments coalesce and again display the intricate skill by the musicians. I especially am biased towards songs with a lot of percussion and “Afoxe do Amor” brings it hard. On top of the insane rhythms is a flamenco guitar that delicately balances upon a walking bass line.
I may not have understood a single word of Revolution Rivoluzione Revolução but I didn't need to. This is music that has so much unbridled energy it really feels like a living thing. Its energy will grab you and won't let go until its final note. This is hands down a great album that is dynamic and full of life.
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