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  • Jonathan Widran

RICARDO PEIXOTO, Scary Beautiful

With 2019 being the 60th anniversary of the Bossa Nova, there’s a clamoring for all musical things Brazilian that should spark keen interest in Scary Beautiful, the latest eclectic ensemble album by former Terra Sul leader, adventurous composer and versatile guitarist Ricardo Peixoto.

While the polyrhythmic, globally conscious album – co-produced by veteran producer and Bonnie Raitt drummer Ricky Fataar - has its magical soft-spoken romantic moments, it’s pretty much a celebration of every Brazilian style but bossa – and delightfully, that means a whirlwind of explosive rhythms and high-octane fun.

Considering the wide array of Brazilian and Bay Area musicians involved, it’s truly the ultimate fusion of every style that’s ever caught the guitarist’s fancy. Infused with Peixoto’s passions, formal training and experiences with jazz, rock, classical and world tours with top Brazilian and Latin artists, the collection jumps exuberantly from silky world jazz grooves and baiao rhythms to lush classical string quartet arrangements, breezy samba, edgy horn arrangements and spirited choro rhythms.

While the percussive palette is expansive, Peixoto’s rich sense of melody and deep-seated soul makes every song memorable and penetrating. To riff off the title, it’s a beautiful and fearless work.

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