Disk Tum Derrei (pronounced “disk-TUM-de-Hey”) features Brazil’s poetry/percussion superhero Thiago de Mello and clarinetist Dexter Payne, a founding member of the Big Sky Mudflaps. As in previous albums, the duo splices together playful sambas and melancholic jazz lines. It’s music for European sidewalk cafes in warm evenings—glasses clinking, and people murmuring under glowing lamplights. Or rainy midnights. Or warm no-care afternoons spent on a spectacular beach, waves crashing on craggy rocks. That sort of thing.
“Fireplace” begins with Haroldo Mauro Jr.’s rich piano chords, which grow edgier and more playful by the second. The clarinet’s hollowed hum is disarming, the way it burrows in and binds itself to the ripple of piano. Disk Tum Derrei is sizzling and funky in a subtle way. Payne and de Mello are martial artists of classy samba, and each note is graceful, intuitive and precise. In “Chegada,” the shimmying rattles and resounding thump of hand drums feel unique to de Mello’s homemade instruments. Less talented musicians would turn this style to smooth jazz monotony, but this crew is masterful with their subtle turns. It’s something like a rainforest canopy—layered, intricately vine-like and basking in intermittent shadow and light. (Erika Fredrickson)