Though their sound blends everything from dub to reggae to Middle Eastern folk, Washington, DC’s own Thievery Corporation developed in the tradition of Bossa Nova. They’ll return to those roots with the release of their seventh studio album, Saudade, due out April 1st their own ESL Music label.
Reacquainting themselves with Brazilian legends like Antonio Carlos Jobim, Gal Costa, and Luis Bonfá, the core duo of DJs Rob Garza and Eric Hilton sought to create a “delicate yet deeply sensuous sound”, according to a press release. (“Saudade” is the Portuguese word for “contented melancholy” or “the presence of absence.”) Like 2011’s Culture of Fear, the album is packed with guest contributors, including U.N.K.L.E., Argentine singer Federico Aubele, Brazilian percussionist Roberto Santos, and longtime Thievery cohort LouLou Ghelichkhani.
“We always try to progress into something different and stretch our musical chops, and taking a whole album to dive into this one sound seemed like a really great way to do that,” said Eric Hilton in an issued statement. Added Rob Garza, “It’s a bit of a departure for us, but at the same time these are our roots, this is what brought us together. It’s us coming full circle from electronic music back to something organic before we move on to our next chapter.”
Our first taste of the “very feminine record” comes with “Depth Of My Soul”, a rich and dramatic jazz-tune. Feeling at home in an old movie or a cocktail lounge, guest vocalist Shana Halligan passionately croons over luxuriant strings and vibrant orchestration. In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Garza said the song has lots of “hidden meanings, adding, “It’s kind of inspired by love, but it’s also inspired by psychedelic moments musically from all types of soundtracks. I appreciate a lot of films from that era, just the look, the stylings, the locations, everything.”