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Sao Paulo Confessions

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Album Review

Brazil's São Paulo is the largest city in South America, home to an estimated 19 million inhabitants. In 1992, this megalopolis ranked as the world's third largest city, coming in behind Tokyo and Mexico City. Within São Paulo's environs, like within any 21st century city, there is diversity and disparity, super-modern chic, and profound indigence. On the CD São Paulo Confessions, the Yugoslavian-born Brazilian pianist, producer, and programmer Suba mixed the modernity of techno beats and sampled loops with traditional Brazilian musics. Suba, who previously played piano with Hermeto Pascoal and Marcos Suzano, and produced records for such well-known Brazilian artists as Marina Lima, Mestre Ambrosio, Edson Cordeiro, and Arnaldo Artunes, collaborated on São Paulo Confessions with percussionist João Parahyba and vocalists Cibelle and Taciana. Their live percussion and vocals, in addition to a number of acoustic guitar melodies, add enormous depth to Suba's inventive compositions. Unfortunately, the songs suffer when a standard techno dancehall bass drum line is added to the mix. The techno beat tends to take João Parahyba's uniquely Brazilian rhythms and override their subtleties with an extremely uninteresting and plodding beat. Nonetheless, particularly commendable tracks on São Paulo Confessions include "Vocé Gosta" and "Antropofagos," which both feature reverberating street samba rhythms. The CD's eighth track, "Sereia," has at its core what sounds like an oscillating electronic cuica. In sum, Suba, who died from smoke inhalation during a fire in his São Paulo apartment and studio, was indeed one of Brazil's most promising exponents of modern Brazilian music. Though his death is undeniably tragic, Suba's inventive and visionary São Paulo Confessions will allow his legacy to live one.

Customer Reviews

Music as Evocative as the Cover!

I can't believe I'm the first to review this modern masterpiece. This album is a complete experience, something that demands to be listened to with the finest headphones, as the music wraps you in a cocoon. For those not familiar with Suba, he was born in the former Yugoslavia, but moved to Brazil and created electronic sounds heavily influenced by Brazilian culture, hence the album title. He produced Bebel Gilberto's incredible debut "Tanto Tempo" and had just completed this album when he perished in a studio fire. His is one of those tragic deaths where we wonder how much amazing music he still had in him to give the world. The next time you're cruising around the city at night, put this album on and you'll see what I mean when I say that we lost one of the good ones when Suba passed.

Untoppable Brazilian electronica

This project by a musician who, sadly, is already deceased is a wondrous thing. The production is astounding—layer upon layer of instruments and percussion in a deep, all-encompassing soundstage, superbly engineered to create a parallel universe. Exquisite if you have a revealing sound system or great set of headphones. I am utterly transported every time I listen, and this CD warrants repeated listenings, revealing some new detail each time. If you can't afford a trip to Sao Paulo, go there with this CD. It's a heady, dark, late-night trip that you'll never forget.

a classic

i remember how fresh this sounded when i bought it 99... it still sounds fresh. somebody stole that CD from me... there is a reason why check it out


Born: June 23, 1961 in Novi Sad, Yugoslavia

Genre: Electronic

Years Active: '80s, '90s

Suba was a producer who had important participation in the process of inserting electronic sonorities in the Brazilian pop sound in the '90s. Suba (Mitar Subotic) arrived in Brazil on March 15, 1990, with a UNESCO scholarship. No one knew him, but he opened his way and began to display his work in music, theater, dance, fashion, and advertising. Among his several notable works as producer are the albums Tanto Tempo (Bebel Gilberto), Pierrot do Brasil (Marina Lima), Benzina (Edgard Scandurra), and...
Full Bio
Sao Paulo Confessions, Suba
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Customer Ratings