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World Music CD Reviews Greater Latin America


By Stacy Meyn
Published September 28, 2005

Tommy Boy TB-1622-2

Antigua was the name of the Guatemalan capital until a mid-1800s earthquake forced a change. Parisian pals Tom and Joyce were making their names until a Brazilian bossa nova chanteuse got shook up over one of them. Now Tom Naïm (guitarist, Moog synthesist) and Joy Hozé-Liwer (vocalist) propel their adoration of bossa nova, mambo, salsa, and Afro funk with French jazz. Backed by a conventional quintet and former Fela Kuti band drummer extraordinaire Tony Allen, Tom and Joy use French (“Sous tes ailes”), Portuguese ("Imagina”), Spanish (“Lluvia”) and English (“Be mine”) to verbalize their sophisticated vibe. They honor the master, Antonio Carlos Jobim, on his first class, first track "Meditation." Strings and harmonica grace “Esquiesse” and muted trumpet dances on “Broadway.” Afrobeat moves "Jamaïca" and "Kadia." It’s jazz and funk a-go-go in "Out Of My Mind" and brass abounds on “Outro Mundo.” Name games aside, Tom and Joy (and Tony) have their bossa nova bearings on Antigua.