The London-based record label Far Out Recordings is killing me a little these days! I was honored to receive tracks from Alex Malheiros’ new album, and I’m pretty sure I’ll be picking it up on disc, but I loathe having to wait too long such treasures to come out. Still, an album of this magnitude is worth the wait, trust me. November 21st will come quickly, judging by how fast 2021 has blown by.
For those of you who know something about Brazilian jazz, especially of the fusion variety, Alex Malheiros is not going to need any introduction. For those of you who are new to this name, you’re in for a pleasant experience.
Malheiros is one of Brazil’s most influential bassists and one third of the legendary fusion band Azymuth. His music transcends genres, and his bass playing has graced the albums of such luminaries as Jorge Ben, Milton Nascimento, Roberto Carlos, Marcos Valle and Mark Murphy, and he’s performed and toured with everyone from Stevie Wonder to Chick Corea. You’re not going to find a much better corpus vitae from any other living bassist.
Tempos Futuros is his vision of a radiant Brazilian funk-futurism, and it is as freshly innovative as anything Far Our Recordings has published over the past few years, while also giving a nod to the past, cueing not only Azymuth, but some legendary fusion and funk albums.
The production value is mind-blowing as well. Daniel Maunick, who has worked with Marcos Valle, Azymuth, Terry Callier, and Ivan Conti, gets the most out of Alex and band, and there is a deep history I was absolutely unaware of. According to the Bandcamp release information, “Daniel’s father Jean-Paul “Bluey” Maunick and Alex Malheiros shared a reciprocal stream of influence throughout the 80s, between London and Rio; Azymuth and Incognito; brit-funk and samba-funk. But just as with Azymuth’s music, you can also hear the influence of stateside jazz-funk masters like Roy Ayers, Weather Report, Lonnie Liston Smith, Mtume and Pleasure.”
I’m particularly pleased to hear Sean Khan’s saxophone playing on this album. His album with Hermeto Pascoal was incredibly sumptuous listening, and he adds a rich dollop of funk to this tasty musical soup.