Posted in Portuguese

Dulce Pontes

I’m still at a very low ebb when it comes to energy for study but I’ve started writing daily again now. I’m five days in and here’s the write-up of the Dulce Pontes concert a few days ago.

Ora bem, vamos a isto: mais uma tentativa de ressuscitar o meu streak morto.

Eu e a minha esposa fomos assistir a um concerto de Dulce Pontes numa sala de concertos chamado Cadogan Hall. Quando comprei os bilhetes, o concerto estava agendado para Novembro de 2021 mas foi adiado por causa da pandemia (foi logo no final da época do distanciamento social.)

Dulce Pontes at the Cadogan Hall
Dulce Pontes at the Cadogan Hall

O espectáculo foi incrível. Ela cantou fado e canções folclóricas; bailou e tocou piano. A maioria das pessoas no público eram portugueses que já conheciam as músicas e gritavam “Brava! Ah fadista!” Havia um homem à minha frente que era um super-fã. Cada vez que ela terminava uma canção ele punha-se de pé e batia palmas. Uma vez, fez isso durante uma música lenta. Eh pá, tinha entusiasmo a mais, mas não faz mal. Fico contente por ele ter curtido!

Posted in English

Fadopalyptica

It’s hard to think of two musical. Genres that would be harder to turn into a crossover performance than Fado and Death Metal. And yet, if you think about it, is it that surprising a combination? They both deal in heavy stuff like death and despair, everyone’s wearing black and it’s all guitar-based (albeit a different kind of guitar). Fado is usually more subtle of course, but could it ever work? Well, here’s Dulce Pontes and Moonspell coming to test the theory at the Play Awards a few days ago.

It starts out with her singing fado and him not really able to keep up, and they go along together for a while, but by the end she’s pretty much reigning supreme over goth metal and he still can’t really keep up. The bit right at the end where he roars and she shrieks, but she can keep up the shrieking about four times as long as he can keep up the roar so he’s just left there staring at heaven from whence God’s vengeance cometh while she’s still belting out the same note. No prisoners taken!

The song they’re singing at the start is “Porque”, from Dulce’s latest album, and it’s based on a poem by Sophia De Mello Breyner Andresen. It’s expressing admiration for another person’s bravery and independence of spirit (“because others wear a mask but you don’t, because others use their virtue to pay for what can’t be forgiven – because others are afraid and you aren’t”) After the beat drops at about the half way mark, they’re onto Moonspell’s “In Tremor Dei“* which is a doom laden song about the 1755 Lisbon Earthquake “Lisbon in flames – a lantern lit, when a city falls another empire arises…” On the face of it, the two songs don’t seem to go well together, but the segue works because of the lyrics: at the end of the second verse of the fado, they sing together “porque os outros se calam mas tu não” – “because others keep quiet but you don’t.” Cue drums, guitar, crowd chanting and first pumping. Epic.

There were some other crossovers at the same show, like one between Nenny and Ana Moura, or between Camané, Agir and the Ukrainian Orthodox Choir, all good in their own ways of course, but this one is by far the most epic.

I’ve got tickets to see a Dulce Pontes concert that was delayed from last November to this November and I’m hoping she brings these lads with her now.

*Don’t panic if you’re struggling to translate the title – it’s Latin, not Portuguese!