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Chandra Lacombe "Jaya" album review in Songlines.


Rating: ★★★

Author: Paul Bowler

Album and Artist Details: Artist/band:Chandra Lacombe Label:Nixi Music

Magazine Review Date:November/2022

Chandra Lacombe has been playing and recording since the early 80s, the Brazilian musician gaining renown for his intertwining of disparate global styles into devotional sounds. His unique playing on the kalimba – substituting the traditional thumb playing technique of the African percussion instrument with a full hand approach akin to playing a piano – is at the heart of this sound along with his distinctive falsetto voice. His latest album continues this musical path with a mix of calming Indian hymns and uplifting Latin pop. The former is best represented here by opening track ‘Mahamritjunjaya’, whose slow-building rhythmic Sanskrit mantras to Shiva are accompanied by cascading kalimba lines, Asiatic flutes and sweetly strummed guitars, to pleasingly meditative results. The sprightly ‘Novo Templo’ is a decent example of the latter; the decision to sing in his native Portuguese over driving panpipe-inflected folk rock backing bringing out a confident vocal performance that recalls his fellow countryman Caetano Veloso.


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