Viajando Com O Som (Voyage With Sound) is a long-lost missing link in the sonic journey of Hermeto Pascoal. Known as "O Bruxo" (The Wizard) and "the world's most impressive musician" by no less an authority than the late Miles Davis, the multi-instrumentalist, composer and arranger continues to be a revered avatar in Brazilian music.
Recorded in two days following a marathon concert that reportedly reached a near-mystical level of improvisation and was comprised mostly of first takes, Viajando Com O Som is a fascinating sonic snapshot of organic, musical metamorphosis. "Danca do Paje" flows with lush flutes and wind chimes in its first half before shifting into a hypnotic groove, while "Mavumvavumpefoco" layers delightfully ad-libbed vocals over an effervescent samba. Most outstanding, however, is "Casinha Pequenina" which cascades on a bass-powered, ultra-tight rhythm that climaxes with muscular saxes before segueing into a percussion solo denouement over its 26 minutes.
Far Out Recordings have admirably unearthed some of the finest Brazilian music over the past 20 years, and Viajando Com O Som is an especially fitting album for their 200th release. (Far Out)