Céu – Novela (2024) [Official Digital Download 24bit/44,1kHz]

Céu – Novela (2024)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/44,1 kHz | Time – 38:30 minutes | 424 MB | Genre: MPB, MPB, Soul, Jazz
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download | Front Cover | © Urban Jungle records

Through no fault of her own, many English-language listeners first encountered the São Paulo singer and songwriter Céu and her music in the ‘00s while waiting in line for their morning coffee. Among the first artists to earn international sales through the power of Starbucks’ point-of-sale CD kiosks, Céu’s early work through Six Degrees Records—heavy post-trip-hop Brazilian beat music built for the dance floor—became a ubiquitous soundtrack for the morning routine, whether in Asbury Park, Finsbury Park or greater Tuscaloosa.

Her work long ago transcended the multinational boost, and in the decade-plus since, Céu’s albums have evolved with a confidence that equals her career-artist status in Brazil. This is a musician, after all, who in the time since has collaborated with artists including Jorge Ben Jor, Gilberto Gil and Herbie Hancock.

Novela is her sixth studio album, and its dozen tracks mix tempos, emotions, percussive accents and inspirations. One reason? She recorded it with producer and Jazz is Dead cofounder Adrian Younge at his Los Angeles analog studio Linear Labs, and as a result, warmth permeates the album. “Into My Novela” grooves like a 1980s quiet storm R&B jam as channeled through sophisticated Brazilian pop. Rich with borderless string arrangements, the lustful ballad “Corpo e Colo” glides with the sensuality of an Isaac Hayes ballad. The bouncy Caribbean rhythm that powers “High Na Cachu,” augmented with a playful arrangement that sounds straight out of a 1960s Nino Rota score, captures her globetrotting influences. All those stylistic inspirations, though, never eclipse the Brazilian essence that drives Novela. Rather, the album proves that, all those lattes later, whatever her energy source, it will land with a foundational, Céu-ian heft. – Randall Roberts

1-1. Céu – Raiou (05:19)
1-2. Céu – Cremosa (02:40)
1-3. Céu – Gerando na Alta (04:08)
1-4. Céu – Crushinho (03:04)
1-5. Céu – Into My Novela (03:56)
1-6. Céu – Mucho Ôro (03:30)
1-7. Céu – High na Cachu (03:12)
1-8. Céu – Buá Buá (02:23)
1-9. Céu – Vinheta Dorival II (00:33)
1-10. Céu – Lustrando Estrela (03:03)
1-11. Céu – Corpo e Colo (02:46)
1-12. Céu – Reescreve (03:51)


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