Following the recent reissue of Jose Mauro’s Obnoxius, Far Out Recordings presents the second release in the treasure trove of the Quartin catalogue, Victor Assis Brasil Plays Jobim.
Over the course of the 60s, Roberto Quartin released more than 20 albums in Brazil on his label Forma, by artists including the likes of Eumir Deodato, Quarteto Em Cy, Baden Powell and Vinicius De Moraës. Selling the rights of Forma to Polygram in 1969, Quartin struck out for pastures new at the dawn of the 1970s with the launch of his self-titled label. Significant works and high-water marks for Brazilian music overall followed in that decade’s first year, with Victor Assis Brasil Plays Antonio Carlos Jobim and the aforementioned Obnoxious. These singular gems in Brazilian music, difficult to categorise yet compellingly haunting, have for too long gone unheard.
Unlike Jose Mauro, whose biography is almost completely shrouded in mystery, Victor Assis Brasil’s tragically short life is a better known story. He passed away aged just thirty-five, but by this point his status was already cemented as one of Brazil’s top players. Gifted his first saxophone by his aunt at the age of fourteen, his debut LP was recorded just four years later, alongside some mercurial greats of Brazilian jazz, Tenorio Jr and Edson Lobo. Following the release of his first two albums, Victor was granted a place to study at Berklee College of Music, and it was during this period he recorded toca antonio carlos jobim upon returning to Brazil in the summer of 1970. At a time in Brazil when the smooth n’ easy groove of the bossa beat no longer reflected the inflamed politics of a nation under the cosh of military dictatorship, Victor Assis Brasil morphed Jobim’s soothing originals into raw, deep jazz cuts, with the help of Brazilian legends Edison Lobo, Helio Delmiro and Edison Machado. The album’s influences spans both American continents, finding a meeting point for Latin jazz and North American post-bop, with Roberto Quartin’s perfectionist approach to sound elevating the already incandescent music to divine new heights.
Like all Far Out reissues, the album has been remastered from the original tapes, and pressed to high quality heavyweight vinyl. A second Victor Assis Brasil release Esperanto will appear later in the series, alongside another Jose Mauro release A Viagem Des Horas and Piri’s long forgotten gem Vocês Querem Mate?