This album is the recorded evidence of an impromptu evening jam session between Jorge Ben and Gilberto Gil, two of the biggest names in Brazilian pop music. There was apparently no rehearsal – just the two of them accompanied by a rhythm section jamming out to extended versions of each others tunes. According to the liner notes Gil was a lot more open to the idea of improvisation than Ben, and this is something that you really notice in the music. Ben acts as the anchor of the group, keeping it simple and laying down deep grooves; Gil meanwhile hovers around him humming and yelping like a deranged circus clown. There is definitely a tension between the two – a very fragile balance between control and chaos. This is partly what makes the end result so thrilling. The album is as soulful as it is spaced out – it’s something that you can dance to, but there is enough looseness and spontaneity to keep the longer tracks interesting all the way through. The album’s centerpiece is the epic, near-15-minute version of Ben’s "Taj Mahal" – a song that Rod Stewart stole and turned into this aberration: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ooYjf95rATg
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