About the album
Rodrigo Leão can claim today to be one of the leading contemporary composers in Portugal. He was very closely connected to the international impact of Madredeus, of which he was a founding member, but chose to leave in 1994 to concentrate on his own solo career. Through the years he has released several albums, recorded with guests like Stuart Staples, Beth Gibbons or Neil Hannon, played with Ryuichi Sakamoto and Ludovico Eunaudi and travelled all over the world, receiving the highest praise from people like Pedro Almodovar, the Spanish movie director. Rodrigo is now about to release a new album, his first after A Mãe from 2009.
Following an instrumental tour, Rodrigo Leão went into the studio and reconnected with childhood memories. With the help of a string trio ( Viviena Toupikova-Violin, Bruno Silva- Viola, Carlos Tony Gomes- Cello and Rui Vinagre –Acoustic Guitar and Portuguese Guitar) and Celina da Piedade on accordion, Rodrigo started a more solitary journey that saw him reconnect with his teens by grabbing instruments like the bass guitar, electric guitar and even drums… The universe behind his new release, “A Montanha Mágica” (that translates as “The Magic Mountain”) is that of childhood memories.
The album was recorded in Alentejo, and at first the plan was to make it purely instrumental, but some of the melodies asked for voices. So Rodrigo reached out to Australian singer Scott Mathew, to a promising new Brazilian talent from S. Paulo, highly regarded by Caetano Veloso called Thiago Petith, and also to well kept Portuguese secret Miguel Filipe, the voice of the project called Novembro. There are three songs and several instrumentals where one can hear, for the first time in Rodrigo’s solo career, the beautiful sounds of the Portuguese guitar. The album is powerfully evocative, draws the picture of a dreamstate and is full of those trademark melodies that only the leader of the Cinema Ensemble can think of. He will present this new material live, with a new ensemble approach, bringing his music into a more intimate sphere.
Get ready to travel inside your mind!