The album Notes Over Poetry seems to indicate that the pianist Philippe Baden Powell is ready for his jump off the cliff and that too, without a net. And jump he does with music that flies in the face of a convention that expects nothing but ‘Brasilian rhythms’ from the sublimely talented son of his legendary father Baden Powell de Aquino. And as if to put paid to the fact that the son can also slip out of his father’s shadow, the pianist pens a lyrical melody that melds rap into lyric poetry of “Notes Over Poetry”, the song itself becoming not just a double-entendre, but also a metaphor for the rest of the songful compositions on the album.
Coming alongside the solo piano recording that Philippe Baden Powell once made for Adventure Music, Notes Over Poetry is an exploratory borehole into the more jazzy stratum of the pianist’s career and redeems itself from self-indulgence by being both original (none of this material has appeared before to the best of my knowledge) and an invaluable and unabashedly dreamy snapshot of Mr Baden Powell’s dreamy, otherworldly popular persona. Furthermore this music is a palimpsest of his own history growing up in a household that saw a procession of great Brasilian artists come in and out of and this is reflected in its brave new world of idiomatic music.
Apart from showcasing the vocal skills of Philippe Baden Powell the music also features those of David Linx, Paula Tesser and the glorious operatic soprano Delphine Blanc (who graces Philippe Baden Powell’s meditative “State of Music”). Overall this is energetic stuff from various states of mind in which the pianist is also composer and orchestrator in one standout performance after another. As a welcome bonus, the music has been captured in sound that is rich in depth and clarity, and is also appropriately atmospheric.
Track List: 1: Vamos Donatear? 2: Notes Over The Poetry; 3: For You To Know; 4: Hues; 5: Chica; 6: The Lonely Dreamer; 7: Recado Pra Você; 8: Salvadora; 9: Quem Sabe? 10: State of Music.
Personnel: Philippe Baden Powell: acoustic piano (1 – 9), Fender Rhodes (10) and vocals (5, 9); Rafael Paseiro: acoustic bass (1 – 4, 6 – 10) and electric bass (5); André Ceccarelli: drums; Ruca Rubordão: percussion (1, 7); Amir Mahla: tenor saxophone (1, 2, 5, 7, 10); Marlon Moore: recitation (2); David Linx: vocals (2, 4, 6); Alexandre Vaz: acoustic guitar (5); Paula Tesser: vocals (7); Sidney Rodrigues: electric guitar (10); Renata Neves: viola (8); Delphine Blanc: vocals (10); Rubinho Antunes: trumpet and brass arrangements (1, 2, 5, 7, 10).
Label: Far Out Recordings