Friday, 15 July 2016
Egberto Gismonti - Circense (1980)
A vague concept album of sorts, in as much as it was intended to a evoke a circus atmosphere that was both universal and also unmistakably Brazillian, Circense kicks off with the dizzying rhythms of Karaté. Tá Boa, Santa and Equilibrista are equally uptempo, with Gismonti's guitar virtuosity to the fore. He's also on fine form on Cego Aderaldo, duetting with Indian violinist Lakshminarayana Shankar, a singular ECM artist in the 80s but one who didn't cross paths with Gismonti in that context. The best tracks here as far as I'm concerned though are the gorgeous ballads Mágico, with its haunting wall of wordless voices and orchestration, and the timeless Palhaço. The latter is arguably the highlight of the whole album, with saxophonist Mauro Senise doubling the gorgeous melody in place of Garbarek.