Blues and Soul Music Magazine

Issue 1101

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Da Lata: Hospital Club, London 4/12/13

Jandira: Da Lata - Hospital Club, London 4/12/13
Jandira: Da Lata - Hospital Club, London 4/12/13 Ernie McKone: Da Lata - Hospital Club, London 4/12/13 Da Lata: Hospital Club, London 4/12/13 Da Lata: Hospital Club, London 4/12/13

It didn't take a lot for this rather enterprising outfit to get the hip London 'heard it all before crowd' into their sounds! That's because Da Lata's captivating formula isn't hard to identify…it exudes soft and velvet like textures, lilting dynamism over an unobtrusive chilled-out feel. Exemplified by the likes of "Ponteio" with it's "World Is A Ghetto" vibe, latin style, going into a seductive chorus that melts in the mouth as singer Jandira Silva, leads the song from minor to joyous major (Cole Porter in reverse!)

Chris Franck, bandleader, driving force and guitarist relishes his role and was in fine fettle. No wonder he was all smiles with a heavy rhythm section comprising of vibes master Ernie Mckone (who brings the funk to the table) Carl Smith percussion and the propulsive thrust of Tristan Banks on drums, who wouldn't be? This afro brazilian threesome are an engine room working overtime to keep the rarified steam flowing and moving…Finn Peters' distinctively silky flute is seductive as a whisper, and his natural lyricism emboldens his firm musical grasp sharply contrasted with his muscular alto sax, which has a nice touch of 'ethiopique' freeform about it. However the clincher was the pulse which the band ramp up subtly with each number passing – the hypnotic rhythms of traditional brazilian dance music fused and subtly reshuffled by consummate jazz-influenced musicians, sheer mastery!

"Deixa" from the exquisite new album "Fabiola" sounded a lot tougher in its live incarnation, which was to be expected as McKone in the flesh is bound to result in a heavier animal. What is SO evident in Da Lata's sound is the playful lyricism, you get coupled with fantastic joyous melodies which Jandira is happy to share with her appreciative audience. With good old fashioned call and response deployed, often bringing band and crowd together, "Blurred Lines" but in a good way!

"Unknown", also from "Fabiola", sounded a lot more organic live. With real bass and a juicier rimshot-roundness glueing it all together, plus some moody string sounds from keyboardist Mike Catto, who added some classy touches. He was totally smothered by a bank of keys, you might not have been able to see him, but feel him you could! Likewise guest soprano player Nathan Haines (curiously dressed like Chico Marx or Coco The Clown, take your pick!) added his imperious tones to proceedings then had a musical bunfight with altos Peters, oh well, let's face it, he was dressed for the part!Next up some afro blessedness in the shape of 'NJY'…a one chord grinder with some spiky, twist & turn, riff laden heads, again driven by the tumultuous rhythm section and highlighted by an earthy guitar solo courtesy of Franck. Blinding stuff!

Good to see the funk is not neglected either, as "Ronca Da Cuica" has a great rhythm guitar groove on it. Jandira really surpasses herself on this with some great scatting over some slap happy bass and Chick Corea type rhodes, voicings adding harmonic interest over a glorious minor groove. You getting the picture?

Suffice to say this was a wholly edifying experience and I'm glad I caught Da Lata live, the Oak Room in the Hospital Club had a great sound and atmosphere too.
Words Emrys Baird

From Jazz Funk & Fusion To Acid Jazz

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