Like no one else we can think of, Cibelle makes use of a variety of elements to create unique, imaginative and enchanting pieces of music. Let's not mince our words : her second album is a genuine masterpiece. It combines rootsy acoustic instrumentation & electronic processing, noise guitars & children's toys, captivating textural soundscapes and pure melodies carried by her unmistakable, moving voice.
Listening to each of the songs on The Shine of Dried Electric Leaves is like hearing a story and exploring a landscape full of surprises, all at once. Cibelle's lyrics and musical ideas are directly derived from her emotional life: she says she likes to use her life as a lab, and claims to be the hamster and the scientist all at once...
Cibelle produced this album over a period of 18 months, taking some of the tracks with her from London (where she now resides) to São Paulo (her home town) and back, gathering along the way contributions from various co-producers and performers including Mike Lindsay (Tunng), Apollo Nove (the innovative producer/artist from São Paulo, who produced most of her debut album), Parisian mixer Yann Arnaud (Air, Sebastien Schuller), and guests such as Seu Jorge (of 'City Of God' and 'The Life Aquatic' fame), Devendra Banhart, and CocoRosie collaborator Spleen.
While some of the album's ten original compositions (written by Cibelle in partnership with her various collaborators) and three covers are simple, limpid crystalline gems (such as her ‘Train Station’, her renditions of Tom Waits' ‘Green Grass’ and of Jobim's ‘Por toda minha vida’ to name but a few), some others are genuine pop mini-symphonies bursting with ideas, with musical and lyrical story lines which take you from A to Z without ever looking back (‘Lembra’, ‘Flying High’, ‘City People’, ‘Phoenix’).
Also noteworthy are ‘Mad Man Song’, in which all the sounds but one were created by Cibelle and Spleen using only their voices, spoons, sugarcubes, cups and coffee… and ‘London, London’ (sung in duet with Devendra), a song written by Brazilian hero/star Caetano Veloso while he was living in forced exile in London during the early '70s, which strangely echoes Cibelle's own (voluntary) move to the UK some 30 years later.