The Best of Azymuth – Jazz Carnival
In 1979 the three-man Brazilian jazz group Azymuth shot to fame in the UK with their single Jazz Carnival, an up-tempo jazz-funk instrumental largely rooted in the disco sound of the era. I almost bought the 12” single but was put off when the store clerk commented that the music ‘just went on and didn’t seem to go anywhere’. However, more than a decade later, I came across ‘The Best of Azymuth: Jazz Carnival’ CD in my local record store and perhaps through a sense of nostalgia bought it. Little did I know that I was buying such a musical hotpot of sounds and rhythms.
I have listened to one track, The Textile Factory featuring guest vocalist Flora Purim singing in her native Portuguese, a countless number of times without tiring of it, and other tracks too are equally good to hear. I have to agree with the comment made by the clerk in the record store about the title track, but the intricate African and Latin American rhythms with beautiful jazz harmonies, melodies and improvisations on the other tracks make this album a worthwhile addition to any jazz collection.
Although the music may sound a little dated now it still has great appeal. Azymuth proves that there is more to Brazilian jazz than bossa nova.
At the time of writing, this 1988 compilation CD is still available from Amazon.