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Mutantes e Seus Cometas No Pais do Baurets

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Album Review

The fifth album from Os Mutantes was officially their last, although they would record another one in the same year, released as Rita Lee's solo album. There was little sound technology available, so they had to invent their own wah-wah, flanger, and phaser pedals, sound systems, and more. The second track is an acoustic ballad where the innocent voice of Rita Lee presents the love declaration of a bitch to her dog, backed by a bumbo leguero (typical instrument of South American countries and a trademark of protesters against dictatorship). It is no surprise that they were hated by the government: censorship delayed the release of the album, due to the title and the lyrics of "Cabeludo Patriota" ("Hairy Patriot"). Os Mutantes changed it to "A Hora E A Vez Do Cabelo Nascer" and added some noise over the censored lyrics. That leads you to think that their debauchery, irreverence, and utmost ignorance and alienation in relation to the grave happenings of the time produced some serious awareness. On the properly musical side, they show uncanny virtuosity in several different styles (rock, funk, ballad, jazz-rock) in tracks longer than the usual, filled with improvisation and beautiful and challenging solos. After so much effort to not be taken seriously, "Balada Do Louco" ("Ballad of the Insane") may pass unperceived. Its deep existential meaning, dealing with the feeling of rejection by society for not conforming to its standards, is an important song that may provide with some understanding for Arnaldo's mysterious suicide attempt in the '80s, at the same time serving as the key for understanding their concept: "I swear that it is better to not be the normal/If I can think that God is me."

Biography

Formed: 1965 in Sao Paulo, Brazil

Genre: Brazilian

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '00s, '10s

Though rarely heard outside their Brazilian homeland (especially during the first phase of their career), Os Mutantes were one of the most dynamic, talented, radical bands of the psychedelic era — quite an accomplishment during a period in which most rock bands spent quality time exploring the outer limits of pop music. A trio of brash musical experimentalists, the group fiddled with distortion,...
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Mutantes e Seus Cometas No Pais do Baurets, Os Mutantes
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