Os Mutantes: Haih or Amortecedor (Anti)

 |   |  1 min read

Os Mutantes: Querida Querida
Os Mutantes: Haih or Amortecedor (Anti)

This isn't quite the same Os Mutantes that was one of the seminal bands in the Brazilian tropicalia rcok'n'roll revolutionary movement of the late Sixties (members departed, the band broke up in the late Seventies) but it is a pretty good facsimile, and does include founder member Sergio Dias who here collaborates with the great Tom Ze and hauls in a hot young band.

The original Os Mutantes fired off in all directions -- rock, prog-rock, traditional sounds, bits which sound like they were ripped from soundtracks and so on -- and this does much the same: it is as unpredictable as a Frank Zappa album, has a mad energy about it (like some nutty soundtrack to a crazy cartoon, or a rock'n'roll Spike Jones) and generally offers some rather bewildering listening.

By the time you get to the fourth piece you've probably heard what you think were about 10 different songs. The politics, such as it is here, is hardly to be taken seriously however: Baghdad Blues seems rather happier making wordplay jokes about Ali Baba and Mohamed (Ali), and you might find as much serious intent in the samba parody O Careca (Baldy).

However it's hard not to get swept up in the schizo-energy and they offer some punctuations of pop-relief along the way (the chiming guitars of O Mensageiro/The Messenger which sounds like a lost, Sixties song and the lightly floating Anagram).

This is apparently the first Os Mutantes album in about 35 years and while it doesn't match the mad, liberating sound of their first incarnation in enough places they confirm that their original blueprint was sound -- and when they use it again this is a genuinely surprising album which will keep you on your toes. If not knock you on your ear. 

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   World Music articles index

Habib Koite and Bamada: Afriki (Cumbancha/Elite)

Habib Koite and Bamada: Afriki (Cumbancha/Elite)

Music from Mali doesn't come much more mesmerising or mellow than this consistently laidback series of songs by one of that country's most inventive and musically curious griots. For this album,... > Read more

Nortec Collective: Tijuana Sound Machine (Nacional/Southbound)

Nortec Collective: Tijuana Sound Machine (Nacional/Southbound)

Often things just turn up unexpectedly at Elsewhere and this album from Tijuana's electronica outfit Nortec (a neoligism from Norteno and Techno), was certainly unexpected. It came out almost two... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT . . . SPADE COOLEY: Shame on him

WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT . . . SPADE COOLEY: Shame on him

When country singer Spade Cooley went face down after a heart attack in November 1969 there were doubtless a few would have said he deserved to die, and that it should have happened sooner.... > Read more

Mathias Eick: Skala (ECM/Ode)

Mathias Eick: Skala (ECM/Ode)

As mentioned in a review of one his earlier albums, The Door (here), Norwegian trumpeter Eick has an inclusive approach to his art and has played in many different contexts, from big bands to... > Read more