Somewhere in the Hills (O Morro Nao Tem Vez) - featuring Natalie Cole
Lugar Comum - featuring Jovanotti
Morning in Rio
Dreamer - featuring Lani Hall & Herb Alpert
Y Vamos Ya (...Let's Go) - featuring Juanes
Catavento (Catavento e Girassol) - featuring Gracinha Leporace
Acode - featuring Vanessa da Mata
Brazilian music legend Sergio Mendes spins his remarkable magic on his newest recording, a bona fide classic! This is a kaleidoscopic album that underscores the maestro's ear for addictive melodies, as well as his ability ... more »to cast incredibly talented singers and musicians from all over the world« less
Brazilian music legend Sergio Mendes spins his remarkable magic on his newest recording, a bona fide classic! This is a kaleidoscopic album that underscores the maestro's ear for addictive melodies, as well as his ability to cast incredibly talented singers and musicians from all over the world
""Encanto" follows the highly acclaimed 2006 collaboration with will.i.am Timeless and with this latest release, Sergio takes us even deeper into Brazil, having recorded all the basic tracks in Rio and Bahia and finally finishing up in in California, where the studio band included Alphonso Johnson. For "Encanto" (in Spanish for Enchantment), Mendes has also enlisted the formidable and enchantingly diverse talents of an array of guest musicians who hail from the world over. Latin superstar Juanes from Colombia and multi-talented Carlinhos Brown & Vanessa da Mata from Brazil jostle alongside the foremost Japanese pop group Dreams Come True, Belgium's Zap Mama and Italian rapper Jovanotti. This international cast is completed by the American stars Fergie, Siedah Garrett and Herb Alpert who is accompanied by his wife, original Brasil '66 singer, Lani Hall. Old smoothie Mendes gets jiggy on a selection of bossa-favourites with a raft of guest stars including the ubiquitous Will.i.am and Fergie from the Black Eyed Peas, Natalie Cole and Herb Alpert et all... This new album essentially is a cross between Mendes' soft, salsa-tinged melodies and modern day R'n'B. The opening track, "The Look of Love" with rap/vocals by Fergie, is a deliciously moreish funky-fusion, and for the first third or so, the combination of Sergio's Rhodes with the hip-hopped production style is terrific. Perhaps this new version of Burt Bacharach's "The Look Of Love", which Mendes had originally transposed to bossa nova heaven in 1967 is the boldest track on "Encanto". This new interpretation, produced by Black Eyed Peas will.i.am, preserves the alluring melody of the original while bringing the song into the new millennium with crisp drum programming and a sexy rap by Fergie. Then it goes all smooth jazz on you. Not bad, though. Whether you are a Sergio Mendes fan especially the earlier stuff, Brasil 66, Equinox, etc or a Black Eyed Peas fan, or indeed R&B then there's something on this album to please everyone. I'd say for such a challenging album there are only a couple of songs that are just to heavy hip hop for me. The rest is a joy to listen to, if you are open minded about remixes and love to see what Sergio has been up to. This album is a grower. The more I listen to it, the better it gets. You will like it. Picks of the album: "The Look of Love", "Waters Of March", "Dreamer", and "Somewhere In The Hills (O Morro Nao Tem Vez)".
Equinox Sergio Mendes & Brasil '66 - Greatest Hits The Very Best of Sergio Mendes & Brazil 66
The album debuts at # 1 of Billboard Top Contemporary Jazz and at # 60 of The Billboard 200 (Issue Date: 2008-07-12)."
A Step Up from "Timeless"
bordersj2 | Boston | 09/18/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
""Timeless", released in 2006, was a welcome return for Sergio Mendes. I hadn't really followed him much since his album a full ten years before that one titled "Oceano". He used an approach similar to the Oceano and "Brasileiro" albums of the 90's. That is, utilize the talents of some of the budding new talents of the time and put out a nice quality album. On Timeless, he produced the album with Will-I-Am of the black eyed peas, and had a similar approach but more hip-hop/R&B influenced, rather than contemporary as the older 90's albums. I think the key to enjoying this and "Timeless" is to take them as they are. A melding of different musical styles and cultures. It's not like his old music from circa' the 70's. I think some people might be surprised how big R&B and rap and hip-hop are in Brasil; at least in the cities... a lot of my friends in the interior like forro, pagode, etc. but even then like hip-hop, etc.
This one stacks up nicely. In fact, I liked this one better than "Timeless". One of my main criticisms of Timeless was that it felt like I didn't always feel enough of Sergio's influence, if that makes sense. But here you can definitely hear more of Sergio's unique sound and production work which makes it feel so Brazilian. I liked the beat to "Waters of March", sung in English by Ledisi. "Oda-Ya" was funky enough, featuring Carlinhos Brown, a super producer in Brasil whom Sergio actually featured in his old "Brasileiro" cd, and was a part of Tribalistas. For some reason the rhythm reminds me a bit of Jairzinho. I also really dug "Somewhere in the Hills", sung by Natalie Cole. An Antonio Carlos Jobim staple, she did a very nice job. "Dreamer", featuring Herb Alpert and Brasil 66 member Lani Hall was also very beautiful. Another top song on this album was "Catavento". Simply beautiful, featuring Gracinha on vocals, and Toninho Horta on guitar. For good measure there's also a healthy dosage of cuica. Wonderful rhodes as expected and a very nice, easy bossa in some parts. More than maybe any of the other songs on this album, it's the closest to her features on "Oceano" or "Brasileiro". they have a near magical musical connection, Sergio and Gracinha.
There were other very good songs too, like "Acode" with the very talented (and Goooossssstosa Vanessa Da mata) and "Y Vamos Ya" featuring Colombian icon Juanes. It's a very nice album. There's much less hip-hop/rap in this, and it goes down much smoother. But I understand this might be a downer to some, and to be honest the one song I didn't really care much for was the rendition of "The Look of Love". Otherwise, I certainly recommend this. Classy guests all around bsides the artists mentioned. Even Joao Donato appears! Especially if you were similar to me with the last album and wanted a few more songs like "Timeless" and "Samba Da Bencao" or "Consolacao" for example. A nice job by Sergio and will-i-am, who I think hit on the concept a bit more here with less samples, etc. If you do get this and like it, check out Timeless and you might also like Sergio's "Brasileiro" album from 1992 as well. For another artist, check out Marcos Valle too.
In a year where we sadly lost a legend (Dorival Caymmi), it's wonderful to hear a new album from Sergio Mendes."
Sergio does it again
SoCal guy | Los Angeles, CA USA | 06/12/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Sergio Mendes's last album - Timeless - was soooooo good that I couldn't wait for a follow-up.
Encanto does the job. Natalie Cole, Herb Alpert and Lani Hall are all big treats here.
I've been a huge fan of the "Brasil '66" sound since it started. Can't get enough of this infectious beat. Glad that Sergio is still around to give it to us!"
My Favorite for 2008!
Trish L. Stewart | 12/19/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I bought this CD last summer, having never heard of Sergio Mendes or bossa nova...I just loved Will.i.am and was looking for something new and different to listen to...( My tastes run from everything from rauchy nasty gangsta rap to Bob Wills and the Texas Playboys) Well...this has been my year of Sergio Mendes and jazz! I love this CD more and more everytime I listen to it...it just gets better and better. After I fell in love with Encanto...I went back and bought Timeless and some of the Brasil 66 stuff. I love it all but this is my favorite. It just makes you feel good! "
Easy listening, easy to like
Enrique Torres | San Diegotitlan, Califas | 11/20/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This disc is hot, the old (Sergio Mendes) meets the new (Fergie et al) for some way cool grooves. Mr. Bossa Nova has reinvented himself for a new generation but I think this one might appeal more to those with long memories and remember Sergio Mendes & Brazill 66. I do and it has the same or a similar effect on me now as then, as being fresh , exotic danceable grooves but in a lounge sortta way. The fact that he uses popular popish artists make this an accesssible happy-go-lucky disc; sort of like Dorothy taking a stroll in the Wizard of Oz. Nothing is too threatning or dangerous on this disc, it is safe fun music for your cocktail party. It is just quirky and novel enough to make people smile and get to know one another. The often recorded(how can you miss?) "The Look of Love" is not sultry like Diana krall's The Look of Love but rather Fergie gives it that hip, whispery, soulful touch that jibes perfect with the bossa-hip-hop grooves. Several songs are straight outta the Brazilian bosa nova mode like "Lugar Comun," "Catavento" and "Acode" with it's Bebelesque vocals. "Agua de Beber" is a very cool song, featuring Will.I.am,who gets real bossa nova with a street twist. The song reminds me of something the Spaniard Gecko Turner Guapapasea! might do; he even sounds a little like him! This is another fine disc who brought us Fool on the Hill and the bossa nova to mainstream America. Highly recommended listening music for urban sophisticates."