Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Caetano Veloso e Gilberto Gil

  • Tropicália 2 [Elektra/Nonesuch, 1994] A-

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Consumer Guide Reviews:

Tropicália 2 [Elektra/Nonesuch, 1994]
Playful, pretentious, political, speculative, and above all gorgeous, this collaboration is enough to make me stop carping about kitsch and wonder whether samba isn't the pop avant-garde after all. Gil gains a beguilingly arty patina as he grounds Veloso's precious lyricism, and if the translations reduce primal beauty to intelligence, that's what we get for never studying Portuguese. Not only do the airy tunes and shimmering beats promise an endless summer, they prove heat needn't addle the brain. A-