[11 August 2011]
“In 1965,” writes Frederico Cesquim, “Javem Guarda movement was dominating the country and every youngster wanted to be in a band.” The country was Brazil, and Javem Guarda was its premier television music show, a spearhead of the British Invasion, the Beatles – but then there was also samba, and other local styles, mutating and sprouting, and tropicália was creeping closer, closer, and one of its feet was named Gilberto Gil and the other Caetano Veloso. O Bando rose out of that environment, appeared on TV, played live, and released this album. The album was not a hit and the group never recorded again. But O Bando was richly produced, with orchestral arrangements for each song, fuzzy psychedelic screams, vocal harmonies, and the multigenre flavour of a British pop Brazil. Why didn’t it chart? Fate is fickle.