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JAZZ : RETROSPECTIVE : In Brief

*** 1/2 Hermeto Paschoal, “The Free Music of Hermeto Paschoal,” PolyGram Records. Startlingly radical when it was released in 1973, this album is only a little less so today. Take a number of attractive melodies, add Gil Evans textures with Duke Ellington saxophone timbres, toss in a seasoning of Brazilian percussion, and spice the whole mix with sharp, urban dissonances and free-jazz improvising. The result is an astonishing assemblage of sounds. A typical example is “Sereiarei,” in which Paschoal sings and plays soprano saxophone with the accompaniment of an orchestra as well as a collection of pigs, geese, turkeys, chickens and ducks.

Albums are rated on a scale of one star (poor) to five (a classic).


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