Through a background of complex acoustic rhythms came the angelic voice of Teresa Salgueiro, singing with Madredeus at Lisner Auditorium Friday night. By the end of the night, the audience was in love with that angel’s voice, and with the band.
The night began on a humorous note when Carlos Trindade on synthesizer delayed the beginning of the first song because he could not read the notes on the synthesizer’s stand. The problem was solved when one of the technicians turned on the stand’s light. The snafu broke the ice between the band and the audience, and the show continued.
Madredeus’ greatest strength is the ease with which it can string the audience’s emotions along for a ride. While those who understand Portuguese could follow the songs lyrically, anyone who understands music could understand the feelings behind it. From sad, longing songs such as “A Andorinha” (The Sparrow) to festive songs such as “Os Felioes” (The Partygoers), the crowd hung on every note.
On the song before intermission, Salgueiro walked off the stage and let the rest off her bandmates shine in an acoustic instrumental. The two guitarists, Jos? Peixoto and Pedro Ayes Magalhaes, showed their talent on the classical guitar. Their rhythm was supported by Fernando Judice on bass guitar and Trindade’s superb synthesizer. And the crowd loved every minute of it.
At the end of the show, the crowd gave the band a two-minute standing ovation and shouted, “Mais une!” (One more!) Audience members were rewarded with two final songs. Madredeus showcased its incredible talent for combining the traditional Portuguese fado with contemporary rhythms. The music kept the audience spellbound as if by a magician.
This article appeared in the October 27, 1997 issue of the Hatchet.