Brazil’s Azymuth have released two volumes of rare archival recordings with London-based label Far Out Recordings, titled Demos (1973-75) Volumes 1&2. 

After their debut album release in 1975, Azymuth rose to rank alongside the world’s greatest jazz, funk, and fusion artists. Their signature “Samba Doido” (crazy samba) sound ruptured the tried and tested musical structures of the day, resulting in an electric, psychedelic, samba jazz-funk hybrid.

Before they became Azymuth, Jose Roberto Bertrami (keyboards), Ivan ‘Mamão’ Conti (drums), Alex Malheiros (bass), and Ariovaldo Contesini (percussion) played backing band to just about every major artist in Brazil. At the dawn of the ’70s, fascinated by developments in improvisational music, the energetic young group were inspired and ready to move forward, and so any spare moment in which they weren’t in sessions and writing music for other artists, they would be carving out their own sound.

These previously unheard recordings took place between 1973-75 at Bertrami’s home studio in the Laranjeiras district of Rio de Janeiro. Record companies initially rejected all the demos before one was picked up by Som Livre, leading to the release of Azymuth’s seminal album debut. 

Only a handful of these demos were ever professionally recorded and released, making this the first opportunity to hear many of these early Azymuth compositions in their raw, original form.

“On every track the frenetic energy in the studio is palpable, giving the recordings a beautifully personal feel and a sense of the phenomenally creative vision Bertrami, Malheiros, and Conti were realising at the time,” Far Out Recordings explains. “50 years on, Azymuth’s earliest recorded music retains an ineffable, futuristic quality, standing amongst their most captivating and moving work.” 


Volume 1

01. Prefacio (J.R. Bertrami/A. Malheiros/I. Conti) 4.26

02. Castelo (Version 1) (J.R. Bertrami/A. Malheiros/I. Conti) 3.42

03. Melô Da Cuica (J.R. Bertrami/A. Malheiros) 3.58

04. Xingó (Version 1) (J.R. Bertrami/A. Malheiros/I. Conti) 4.58

05. Laranjeiras (J.R. Bertrami/A. Malheiros/I. Conti) 7.36

06. Equipe 68 (J.R. Bertrami/A. Malheiros/I. Conti) 5.44

07. Unknown Jam (J.R. Bertrami/A. Malheiros/I. Conti) 1.58

08. Unknown Song for Mario Telles (J.R. Bertrami) 3.52

Volume 2

09. Duro De Roer (J.R. Bertrami/A. Malheiros/I. Conti) 4.14

10. Manhã (J.R. Bertrami) 7.04

11. Tempos Do Paraná (J.R. Bertrami) 7.42

12. Bateria Do Mamão (I. Conti)

13. Quem Tem Medo (J.R. Bertrami/A. Malheiros/I. Conti) 2.24

14. Xingó (Version 2) (J.R. Bertrami/A. Malheiros/I. Conti) 4.42

15. Juntos Mais Uma Vez (J.R. Bertrami) 4.54

16. Castelo (Version 2) (J.R. Bertrami/A. Malheiros/I. Conti) 6.03

Demos (1973-75) Volumes 1&2 is out now across CD, vinyl, and digital formats. Purchasing and streaming options are available here