Cultura Impura

Cultura Impura

by Saravah Soul


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Released in 2008, Saravah Soul's self-titled debut combined samba, vintage MPB, greasy American funk, and Afro-beat and took the club underground by storm. The half-Brazilian, half British collective led by frenetic dancer and frontman/founder Otto Nascarella gave listeners a taste of this new chapter in May with the digitally released single "Alforia," and it didn't disappoint. Cultura Impura ("Impure Culture") is simply more; both in terms of what the band revealed, and in the truly amazing extensions they've added to their fiery mix. In addition to the aforementioned meld of sounds, SS have added stylistic elements of African highlife and cojo choir music, a few more rhythms such as jongo and coco, and an array of Brazilian folk instruments -- berimbau, surdo, alfaia, and pifano (bamboo) flutes -- to the drums, electric basses, horns, guitars, and myriad chanted, sung, and spoken vocals. Check the opener, "Janaina," with its call-and-response verse underscored by a authoritative refrain from Nascarella. The rhythms walk a tightrope between Afro-beat, highlife, and frevo. "Funk de Umbirgada" follows it with a feverish backbeat thanks to guest drummer Kofi Adu. Horns share the foreground with knotty, hypnotically grooving lead guitar (courtesy of Kiris Houston) and an enormous array of singing in cojo choir style. There is a startling cover of Jimi Hendrix's "Fire" with horns and furious breakbeats leading the way. Nascarella swaggers and spits the lyric streetwise as the chorus answers like a female JB's singing in Portuguese! The album version of "Alforia" is longer, with a different set of rhythmic interpolations, shoving a jarring, hyperactive samba into an Afro-beat groove as highlife-styled guitars play counterpoint solos to the layers of rhythms provided by percussionist Jack Yglesias. The samba vibe on the track is more like pagode; primitive, raw, insistent. This is party music, but it's played with ferocious intensity.Even slower tunes such as "Dá Ne Mim," with its gorgeous, seductive, folk melody, add something new and irresistible -- in this case Northern soul lyricism to Brazilo-Indian chants, accompanied by fretless bass and a hypnotic berimbau. Other standouts include the psychedelic, funkified samba of "Se Da Dó," (with lead vocals by bassist Matheus Nova) and the lunatic, carnivalesque "Cachorro Da Ingrejinha" that feels like a capoeira battle between Afro-beat, bamboo flutes, and drums (hand and kit) in four different but simultaneous polyrhythms. There isn't a weak link here: Cultura Impura is a triumph through and through.

Product Details

Release Date: 07/27/2010
Label: Tru Thoughts
UPC: 5060205150790
catalogNumber: 215
Rank: 142306

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Saravah Soul   Primary Artist
Kofi Adu   Drums,Guest Appearance
Ade Wallace   Guest Appearance
Chris Webster   Trombone
Gustavo Marques   Acoustic Guitar,Guest Appearance
Graeme Flowers   Trumpet
Eduardo Marques   Drums
Jack Yglesias   Flute,Conga,Gong,Triangle,Background Vocals,Berimbau,Caxixi,Pandeiro,Surdo,Chekere,Cuica,Wood Block,Agogo Bell,Alfaia,Gongue,Pifano
Kiris Houston   Organ,Guitar,Background Vocals
Matheus Nova   Bass,Vocals,Background Vocals
Indioney Rodrigues   Background Vocals,Guest Appearance
Alba Cabral   Background Vocals,Guest Appearance
Luzmira Zerpa   Background Vocals,Guest Appearance
Marcelo Andrade   Alto Flute,Baritone Saxophone,Tenor Saxophone,Vocals,Background Vocals,Shaker,Pifano
Otto Nascarella   Guitar,Vocals,Pandeiro,Surdo,Ganza,Alfaia
Paola Faoro   Background Vocals,Guest Appearance
Aluá Nascimento   Guest Appearance,Gunga

Technical Credits

Jimi Hendrix   Composer
Malcolm Catto   Engineer
Jack Yglesias   Lyricist,Additional Production
Kiris Houston   Additional Production
Saravah Soul   Composer
Antonio Feola   Engineer
Matheus Nova   Lyricist
Marcelo Andrade   Lyricist,Additional Production
Otto Nascarella   Composer,Lyricist,Additional Production

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