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Brazilian Electronic Music, Circa 1970 (MP3s)

Funky glitches? Check. Latin American vibe? Check. Found-sound texture? Check.

Dateline circa 1970? Now, hold on a second.

Welcome to the sound world of Brazilian composer Jorge Antunes (born in Rio de Janeiro, 1942), three tracks of whose music were recently made freely available at that Area 51 of avant-garde culture, ubu.com.

The collection is titled Musica Eletronica, and the tracks range from gurgling effects (“Cinta Cita,” MP3) to a mix of heavily treated vocals and a wind-up turntable (“Auto Retrato,” MP3) to abstract stereo noise (“Para Nacer Aqui,” MP3). It’s a minute or so into “Auto Retrato” when a very contemporary mix of archival sound and downtempo beat kick in; DJ Kid Koala wasn’t even born when this was recorded.

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According to liner notes posted separately at mutant-sounds.blogspot.com, “Cinta Cita” means “meeting with the tape,” which explains its rigorous surface-level attention. The post also clarifies the content of “Auto Retrato” (full title: “Autro-Retrato Sobre Paisaje Porteño”), noting that the tango heard on the piece is by Francisco Canaro (toward the end, a pause-tape approach lets a baby’s crying punctuate a dramatic orchestral ending).

More on Antunes at jorgeantunes.com.br. The above photo is from another great Antunes source, americasnet.com.br. The image reportedly shows Antunes in 1970 at the Laboratório de Música Eletrônica do Instituto Torcuato Di Tella in Buenos Aires.

By Marc Weidenbaum

Tags: , / Comments: 2 ]

2 Comments

  1. [ Posted February 21, 2010, at 6:25 pm ]

    Very sensuous–I especially like the first two. Good call on the syncopated passage on “Auto Retrato,” it does sound current. Wow.

  2. [ Posted February 21, 2010, at 8:07 pm ]

    Yeah, that “Auto Retrato” is way prescient. Can’t imagine what it sounded like at the time, a decade and a half in advance of the tabula rasa of CDs, and the rise of glitch, microsound, and lowercase music.

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