Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Brazil Connection #6 - Telerama\Banda Desenhada

Twee is the word that came to my mind when I heard Telerama's "Petite America" for the first time. Which is, of course, a good thing.

Telerama come from the Northeast region of Brazil, the city of Fortaleza, Ceará, to be more specific. It's a very sunny metropolis, full of beauty, which stems especially from its beaches and the deep history of the city. Telerama's music sounds a lot like their home city: very pretty, warm, and instantly likeable.

The band started in 2005, formed by the couple Igor Mainá and Alinne Rodrigues, along with some other musicians. They released a four-song EP and played around Ceará and Brazil for a few years, and even performed at South by Southwest in 2008. In 2009 the band ended, and the couple started a new band, Banda Desenhada, also performing at SXSW. Another four-song EP was released.

Then, in 2013, the couple moved to Montreal, where they released a new song using the name of Telerama. It was "Petite America", accompanied by a delightful video that got a lot of play on the Brazilian internet. Then, in 2014 (according to their Bandcamp page), they released a three-song EP, again as Banda Desenhada.

Whatever name they're using, Miná and Rodrigues's music is always pleasant to listen to, and could very well be described as twee or indie pop. They're open about their influences, and I think The Cardigans are the most apt comparison, though there's certainly a lot more in there. All their songs are in Portuguese, and Alinne's vocal style is decidedly influenced by other Brazilian singers, which fits very well into the indiepop sound. The melodies compliment her voice very nicely, which in turn seems to melt in your ears at certain points.

But their influences are not only musical, they come from everything, and the video for "Petite America" says it all about that.  It reveals everything they're all about: Wes Anderson, Scott Pilgrim, Ninja Turtles, Muppets, retro aesthetics, and much more, all very nicely shot, composed, and colour coordinated. If this sounds like you, go and give it a listen!

The band(s) unfortunately don't seem very active at the moment, but as they have been making music intermittently for about a decade now, there's always the chance they will release something at any moment, in one way or another.

Until then, you can listen to and download their music on the Telerama and Banda Desenhada's Bandcamp pages. Some of the music can be downloaded for free. And it's interesting to see that the song "Sem Ter Amor" was included in all of their releases, each time a different recording of it. My personal favourite is the last one, found on 2014's Minimuseu.

And finally, here's the video for Petite América:

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