Thievery Corporation

Published on October 29th, 2019

Thievery Corporation

There is nothing greedy or criminal in how Thievery Corporation go about their business. The EDM duo of Rob Garza and Eric Hilton typically releases fresh albums every two to three years, and tours far and wide. Twenty four years along, Thievery’s aesthetic — multicultural, conscious and anchored in dance — has followers wherever it goes.

Their latest release, “Treasures from the Temple,” is heavily influenced by Caribbean music but their fondness for Brazilian and Middle Eastern sound, and their electronic bent, still shine through. “Treasures” also harkens back to the pioneering 1960s bossa nova adventures of Stan Getz-and João Gilberto.

Garza and Hilton began performing as Thievery in 1995, and really blew up when their song “Lebanese Blonde” appeared in the 2004 Zach Braff film “Garden State.” Past albums boast cameos by such powerhouses as David Byrne, Wayne Coyne and Perry Farrell. But Thievery also stick with the people who have been with them from the start: A pair of trance-enhancing new tracks, “Destroy the Wicked” and “Water Under the Bridge,” feature return engagements by reggae singer Notch and Argentine chanteuse Natalia Clavier, respectively.

Hip hop and jazz are also very present on “Treasures,” and in lyrics reflective of a wokeness that Thievery practiced long before the term had been coined. Over the soulful slow jam of “History,” Mr. Lif raps, “I can’t be black without historic systematic oppression / I can’t look at a cop without second-guessin’ / These are confessions of the heaviness and stress I hold daily / but still light on my feet like Alvin Ailey.”

First-timers at a Thievery show won’t only be seeing two guys behind laptops: Live musicians and vocalists populate the stage and vibe with Garza’s and Hilton’s curated sounds. From 1996’s “Scene at the Open Market,” featuring Brazil’s Bebel Gilberto, to 2008’s “Forgotten People,” with its Indian sitar, to the international flair of “Treasures,” global human connection is truly at the heart of their work. As Mr. Lif relates, “I’m just a mortal man talking with you / We all cling to the things we hold true.”

Thievery Corporation with special guest Karl Denson’s Tiny Universe perform 8pm Wednesday November 6. at the Fillmore Miami Beach at the Jackie Gleason Theater. ~ Olivia Feldman

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