Since 1999, singer Miho Hatori has been the more visible of the two Cibo Matto ladies, providing guest vocals for several of Dan the Automator's projects, most notably Gorillaz. She achieves real beauty when delving into Brazilian idioms with guitarist Smokey Hormel; inspired by the 1966 album Os Afro Sambas, Smokey and Miho decided to tackle the songs of Brazilian great Baden Powell. Along with Jon Birdsong (trumpet), Don Falzone (upright bass), Ganda (vocals), Mauro Refosco (percussion), and Joey Waronker (drums), the duo transform pleasant samba and bossa-nova shuffles with Smokey's off-kilter, slightly distorted guitar, highlighted by Birdsong's muted trumpet burbling through. Vocally, Miho sounds better than she has on either Cibo Matto album, far more confident in her voice, and delivering relaxed and bright performances.
Along with the five Baden Powell songs from the Tempo De Amor EP, this 10-song CD also includes the 2002 self-titled Smokey & Miho EP, with "Nzage," a 1965 Angolan tune by Ngola Ritmos, and four original Smokey & Miho compositions, sung in both English and Japanese.
Miho has also sung with The Beastie Boys, Handsome Boy Modeling School, Medeski Martin & Wood, and John Zorn. Most recently she was featured on the worldwide hit "19-2000" and four other songs by Gorillaz. Guitarist Smokey Hormel played on Tom Waits's Mule Variations, numerous albums by Beck and Johnny Cash, and has scored films for director David Lynch.
1. Tempo De Amor
4. Canto de Iemanja
5. Canto do Caboclo Pedra Preta
6. Summer Rain
7. Orixa & Iemanja
8. Blue Glasses
10. Ocean In Your Eyes
* Smokey And Miho have been featured on World Cafe, KCRW's Morning Becomes Eclectic and the Y Tu Mama Tambien soundtrack
* Knocked 'em dead at the Montreal and Newport Jazz Festivals
* Sleek digipack reissue of Smokey And Miho's two limited-edition five-song EPs