Release Date: Mar 25, 2016
Record label: Six Degrees
Genre(s): Electronic, Jazz, R&B, Funk, Pop/Rock, International, Neo-Electro, Brazilian Pop, Brazilian Traditions, MPB, Post-Disco
On her records, Brazilian singer and songwriter Ceu soaks up influences like a sponge. She's delved into everything from EDM, trip-hop, and dubby reggae to Tropicalia, bossa, samba, and MPB. That said, she's never sounded like anyone but herself. Her recombinant strategies always bear her idiosyncratic melodic and lyric signature, making her a standout on the global pop scene.
Céu has a cool, sensual, laidback voice that provides an instant reminder of Astrud Gilberto and the bossa nova movement that seduced the US in the early 60s. But she’s from São Paulo, the home of Brazilian electronica and fusion, and her skill in mixing Brazilian tradition with contemporary experiment has earned her four Grammy nominations. The last album, Caravana Sereia Bloom, was mysteriously brief and overly commercial, but Tropix is a return to form.
When the Brazilian singer and songwriter Céu gets to the pivotal word “Pixelado” in the chorus of “Amor Pixelado,” one of the more languorous tracks on her new album, she flips up into her coolly aerated head voice, giving it the exotic emphasis it deserves. The idea of a pixelated whole, an image with many constituent parts, provides a useful metaphor for “Tropix,” her stylistically varied, intricately detailed, slyly coherent fourth album. The record’s focus rarely falls on a single pinpoint in the music, unless you count her voice, an instrument of sensuous calm and limber cool.