Amaro Freitas


Far Out • 2021

He is one of Brazil’s young jazz musicians, not yet 30 years old. But Recife-born pianist Amaro Freitas has arguably delivered a definitive classic with his third album, »Sankofa«. If his second record, »Rasif,« released in 2018, was a rhythmically dense, pulsatingly energetic affair, one might now think from the opening bars of the title track that Freitas has entered his mature phase with his trio, in the sense of hung tempos and great reclusiveness. That’s a bit true, in »Sankofa« the musician from the north of the country prefers to let the tones pearl instead of attacking his instrument in percussive attacks. These still come later, they just alternate more with phases of calm. Freitas simply combines his subtlety in greater doses with the revving up complexity that is typical for him. From the harmonically tender to the dissonantly splintering out, he lets the most different adrenaline levels follow each other, whereby one seems to result quite logically from the preceding. Brazilian traditions, modern jazz, fusion and dosed avant-garde additions are kept as facets in his music. Together with his drummer Hugo Medeiros and bassist Jean Elton, he creates moments of gentleness, only to suddenly conjure up polyrhythmic monsters in the next – or the same – piece. The Sankofa, by the way, is a symbol of West African religions, a bird with its head turned on its back that catches its own egg.