Zimbo Trio – Zimbo Trio Vol.2 (1966) 24bit 96khz Vinyl

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ZIMBO TRIO – VOL. 2
Zimbo Trio
1966 on RGE (XRLP 5277)
Mono pressing

1 Arrastão
(Edu Lobo, Vinicius de Moraes)
2 Balanço Zona Sul
(Tito Madi)
3 Zomba
(Maria Helena Toledo, Luiz Bonfá)
4 Insolação
(Adylson Godoy)
5 Zimba
(Tito)
6 Reza
(Ruy Guerra, Edu Lobo)
7 Samba 40 graus
(Adylson Godoy)
8 Garota de charme
(Maria Helena Toledo, Luiz Bonfá)
9 Vai de vez
(Luiz Fernando Freire, Roberto Menescal)
10 Balada de um sonho meu
(Hamilton Godoy)
11 O rei triste
(Luiz Chaves)
12 Aleluia
(Ruy Guerra, Edu Lobo)

Vinyl original mono pressing ; Pro-Ject RM-5SE turntable (with Sumiko Blue Point 2 cartridge, Speedbox power supply); Creek Audio OBH-15; M-Audio Audiophile 2496 Soundcard ; WaveLab LE 7 at 32-bit float 96khz; Click Repair light settings; individual clicks and pops taken out with Adobe Audition 3.0 – dithered and resampled using iZotope RX Advanced (for 16-bit). Tags done with Foobar 2000 and Tag&Rename.

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This is a pretty incredible jazz-bossa album, with all the heat of a hard bop session but with that bossa sensibility of keeping all the tunes under 5 minutes long. Their version of “Arrastão” (from Edu Lobo and Vinícius) which opens this album is probably their ‘signature tune’, and it is instantly endearing by the time it crescendos into the chorus where the tempo is cut in half and swung very very heavy. Godoy’s classical training seeps through his playing everywhere, with strains of Chopin mingling with his jazz key tickling. Luiz Chaves is one hell of a bassist, and it is a shame and travesty, in my opinion, that Zimbo Trio has continued to perform without him (and — worse than that — included an ELECTRIC bass..). Rubinho Barsotti is also great on trap kit, his work with mallets and cymbals being some of the best I’ve heard in this genre. Although some of these tunes – like the two from Edu Lobo, ‘Arrastão’ and ‘Reza’ — were part of Elis Regina’s repetoire and thus receiving nightly treatments by the Zimbo Trio when they were backing her up, it is the original tunes here that really chama atenção. If the manic opening bass riff of ‘Insolação’ doesn’t call your attention, then just turn the record off and find something else to listen to because you can’t be satisfied. “Samba 40 graus” is another original that makes me wonder if these guys were into amphetamines, trying to save money on studio time, or just in a hurry, but the result is ear-engaging. These guys did know how to chill out as well, however, and “Balada de um sonho meu” is about as pretty a jazz ballad one could hope for, followed the by the gentling swinging ‘O rei triste’ penned by Chavez. For “the sad king” it actually sounds pretty uplifting to me, and has some of Godoy’s most inspired playing on the record.

I shouldn’t forget to mention the two tunes from Luiz Bonfá and Maria Helena Toledo, which are both marvelous. “Zomba” has what may be the most ethereal opening of a mid-60s jazz bossa album I can think of, beginning with only Godoy on piano playing a cluster of chords around one note that fades out like a slow raindrop as Luiz comes in on bowed bass strings, a splash of cymbals from Barsotti so subtle you might miss it – and then at nearly two minutes this orchestral evocation transforms, the urbane becomes urban and streetwise, and Godoy’s erudition tackles blue intervals and the band swings it and swings it hard. Check out how hard he rocks just two notes starting at 2 minutes and 50 seconds, for about five seconds, before breaking down the melody into a dozen fragments of different voicing and tempo. Throughout the whole second half he manages to squeeze in these vertiginous arpeggios into the rest of what he’s concocting. He plays a variation of the single-note trick on us again in the OTHER Bonfa/Toledo tune, “Garota de charme”, where he gently taps out some augmented and diminished chords with his right hand while his left plays a melody in unison with Luiz Chavez’s bass. Charming, indeed. It only last a few seconds but it makes the track for me; it’s these small moments of skin tightness that makes a tune that is only 2 minutes and 16 seconds long seem like it plays for five minutes.

I worked for quite a while on this vinyl rip of this relic, half-century old piece of petroleum, and I think it sounds pretty peachy. Hopefully you will too.

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VA – O Fino da Bossa (1964) (Alaíde Costa, Jorge Ben, Nara Leão, Zimbo Trio, Oscar Castro Neves, Wanda Sá)

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“O Fino da Bossa”
O show “O Fino da Bossa” recorded at the Paramount Theatre in São Paulo, 25th of May, 1964.
Original LP produced by Walter Silva
CD repressing on RGE 1994
featuring:
Alaide Costa
Zimbo Trio
Rosinha de Valenca
Ana Lucia
Paulinho Nogueira
Jorge Ben
Wanda Sá
Nara Leao
Oscar Castro Neves
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Some interesting photos included in the packaging, which feature a young Flora Purim and Toquinho, neither of whom seemingly participated in the recording, but they sure do look pretty
01 – Onde Está Você (Oscar Castro Neves / Luvercy Fiorini) – Alaíde Costa
02 – Garota de Ipanema (Tom Jobim / Vinicius de Moraes) – Zimbo Trio
03 – Samba Medley | Gosto Que Me Enrosco (J. B. da Silva “Sinhô”) Agora É Cinza (Alcebíades Barcelos “Bide” / Armando “Marçal”) Duas Contas (Garoto) Bossa na Praia (Pery Ribeiro / Geraldo Cunha) – Paulinho Nogueira
04 – Tem Dó (Baden Powell / Vinicius de Moraes) – Ana Lúcia
05 – Consolação (Baden Powell / Vinicius de Moraes) – Rosinha de Valença
06 – Chove Chuva (Jorge Ben “Jorge Benjor”) – Jorge Ben
07 – Desafinado (Tom Jobim / Newton Mendonça) – Wanda Sá
08 – Maria Moita (Carlos Lyra / Vinicius de Moraes) – Nara Leão
09 – Berimbau (Baden Powell / Vinicius de Moraes) – Oscar Castro Neves
As the liner notes explain, this concert was recorded less than two months after the military coup that plunged the country into twenty-plus years of repression and censorship. Brazil already having undergone its share of rapid power shifts across the first half of the twentieth century, a lot of people still thought (or hoped) it was a temporary state of affairs. (Actually the generals who took over the country promised to hold elections after they had the situation ‘under control’, which of course never happened except in the most artificial of ways years later). It is surprising to read in these notes how this show was not only sold out but — being that the Paramount only held about 2000 people or so — that people were breaking the glass in doors and windows to force their way in! ! Anyway, the music here is excellent and has some real rarities. Alaíde Costa, still the most underrated of the bossa nova chanteuses, opens the recorded set. Zimbo Trio, led by bassist Luiz Chaves, run through a ripping version of ‘A Garota de Ipanema’ that makes me forget how tired I am of hearing that song — I could be mistaken but I believe that they were the first bossa-jazz trio to play an instrumental version of the tune… Paulinho Nogueira provides a solo acoustic guitar medley of tunes that probably goes on for too long. I have a couple of Nogueira’s albums on vinyl and I like him well enough, they are enjoyable, but he often comes across as a diluted and derivative version of Baden Powell or sometimes João Gilberto (when he sang) combined, without the inspiration or innovation of either of those two. He did however bring a different type of finger-picking style to the way he played samba that is different from Baden.
A nice thing about this record is that we get some of the less famous bossa nova singers who haven’t been canonized into musical sainthood like their brethren, names like Ana Lúcia, Rosinha da Valença, and Wanda, whose records can be hard to track down. Jorge Ben’s live version of “Chove Chuva” is slower and more jazzed-out than the album version, and its quite a treat given how early in his career this is. Note that this track was NOT included in the 2-CD set of rarities that was part of the boxset ‘Salve, Jorge!’ from 2009. Nara Leão is amazing as always singing Maria Moita, and the sound quality on this track is amazing. In fact the whole record sounds great but this one stands out for some reason. The album closes with ten minutes of Oscar Castro Neves’ group giving a majestic treatment of “Berimbau” that includes a full orchestral arrangement in the middle. Too bad all the musicians are uncredited, especially since the guitar sounds.. familiar. Almost like it might be Baden Powell. Who played on a lot of albums uncredited. Hmmm…

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