The Red Hot Organization has been providing us with Red Hot and Something for the last ten years. The Original Red Hot & Blue stands out as a personal favorite, while Red Hot &Rio a few years back is a notch below this latest release in my opinion. This latest album, Onda Sonora, is exceptional. Culled from African, Brazilian, Spanish, French, and American musical influences, both traditional and modern, this disc shows that unlikely marriages can in fact work.
It may seem strange that Lisbon would be the city of choice for this cd, considering that the majority of artists are not Portuguese. Brazil would seem the obvious host. The point was to select the starting point, Portugal, and from there to move out including music from each region tied to Portugal. However, here you wonít find a cd of traditional songs along the lines of a National Geographic "Music of the Portuguese Speaking World". Itís not not anthropological in nature, rather a disc of modern music with various sounds. This premise produced an innovative album. Hereís a sampling of whatís on it:
If the percussion on "Dreamworld: Marco de Canaveses" by David Byrne & Caetano Veloso sounds suspiciously Brazilian and not Portuguese, itís because it is. Donít let that stop you from enjoying it.
Smoke Cityís "O Cara Lindo (Mr. Gorgeous)" is a very sexy song indeed, sung in Portuguese and English. Would that be Portglish?
The sultry Marisa Monte and Carlinhos Brown work it on "Mulemba Xangola", tapping into African influences.
k.d. lang singing "Fado Hilario" does not strike me as digging deep into the legacy of Portugal, but it is still a damn good track with lovely Portuguese guitars.
The lead singer of Madredeus has the voice of an angel. On "Os Dias Sao a Noite (Suso Saiz Remix)" she tranports the mortal listener to heaven.
Lisbon rapper General D + Funk ĎN Lata proves he can outrap any American rapper under the table with his fierce rhythms on "Sobi Esse Pano, Mano".
Apparently the Underground Sound of Lisbon sings in French and an African language I donít know, as in "Hailwa Yenge Oike Mbela (Remix)".
"Sem Voce" by Arto Lindsay, Arnoldo Antunes, and David Moreas is very cool alternative rock song in the vein of the MTV generation.
Obviously this compilation covers muito ground. 23 songs total, with everything from rap, alternative, pop, rock, techno, and traditional sounds, itís an important addition to the Portuguese music catalogue.