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Beat The Donkey by Cyro Baptista

Famed "New York City downtown scene provocateur, John Zorn produced this significant 2002 release by Brazilian percussionist Cyro Baptista. And other than, Zorn performing on alto sax, Baptista’s "Beat The Donkey" ensemble features guitar hero Marc Ribot, vocalist Luciana Souza, and others.

Recognized for his affiliation with Zorn and various appearances supporting other progressive jazz musicians, Baptista highlights his genre busting motivations throughout this compelling production. For example, on the opener titled "The Crab and the Shining Star," you’ll hear a merciless fusion of heavy metal guitar riffs and South American style rhythms. No doubt, it’s an exciting and altogether, highly-charged set as Baptista morphs festive Brazilian type rhythmic arrangements with blithe vocals, delicate acoustic guitar voicings and lilting clarinet lines. It all makes for a rather colorful endeavor. Moreover, the piece titled "Mr Bugaloo," might ring like some sort of structured bastardization of funk and Country music, partly thanks to Romero Lubambo’s atmospheric, steel guitar initiated lines. Whereby, Zorn closes out the piece with a ranting and raving, free-jazz solo. The ensemble’s unpredictable ways combined with focused arrangements and a party-like deliberation, nudges this enjoyable affair to rather lofty heights. (Recommended.... )

This CD includes bonus footage of Beat The Donkey’s Emmy Award winning video.

Additional Info

  • Artist / Group Name: Cyro Baptista
  • CD Title: Beat The Donkey
  • Genre: Brazilian Jazz / Brazilian Pop Jazz
  • Year Released: 2002
  • Record Label: Tzadik
  • Musicians: Cyro Baptista (percussion), John Zorn (sax), Kevin Breitt (guitars), Marc Ribot (guitars), Romero Lubambo (guitars), Luciano Souza (vocals), plus others and the "Beat The Donkey Ensemble"
  • Rating: Four Stars
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