Label: Jazzego
Format: LP Vinyl
Cat: JAZZEGO 004
Genre: Jazz
Release Date: 10th March 2023

Cosmic Drops is the new album by Portuguese jazz keyboardist and producer Sérgio Alves under his Azar Azar alias. After establishing himself in Portugal’s jazz scene, working with some of the country’s biggest names for years, fans saw his solo moniker burst into life on his debut AZAR EP back in 2020.

Now, his lively jazz sound – a unique blend of afro-latin-tinged funk and hip hop made using organic and electronic instruments – bursts into life once again on this juicy 9-tracker, released via Jazzago Records. Cosmic Drops is an exciting, explosive package of fiery jazz tying together many of Alves’ external inspirations, such as afrobeat, funk, house, broken beat and electronic music.

Dreaming Waves is an instant standout – a lazy track with a loose hip-hop drum break and glistening psychedelic keys. It features the silky vocals of the amazing Beth Hirsch, who’s worked on a number of notable projects, including the Moon Safari album by Air.

The LP swings from ultra-smooth beatless tracks, Instant Star for example, to all-out dramatic break-led noodling chaos like in Golden Wonderland. We’re also treated to a disco-y Latin funk exploration in the form Moving In Outer Space, which, over the space nine minutes, delivers driving, danceable drums but also lets the keyboard, sax and synth fluctuate in prominence, each having their chance to shine individually.

Overall, Cosmic Drops has a sound for every type of listener, whether they see jazz music as a time to chill out, or get up and dance. It’s a snapshot of Aza rAzar at the top of his game, showcasing a jazz sound that can be both subtle and unassuming or huge, stimulating and intense.