Ornatos Violeta is a Portuguese alternative rock band, with a fusion of some other trends, including ska and jazz.
It is originally from the city of Porto, composed by Manel Cruz on vocals, Nuno Prata on bass, Peixe on guitar, Kinörm on drums and Elísio Donas on keyboards. With only two albums published, he quickly became a reference in Portuguese music in the late 90’s, although the high point of his career corresponds mainly to the last 3 years of the decade. The band then decided to disband at the end of 2000, teaming up for a one-off concert celebrating their 10th anniversary at KEIMAS 2001.
The band formed in 1991 , but only released an album six years later. During that period, Ornatos participated in several collections and won the originality prize at the 7th Rock Rendez Vous Modern Music Competition . There are many songs created by the band that were not released on disc.
In 1997 they released Dog! , their first work — which includes the theme “Letra S”, in a duet with Manuela Azevedo , lead singer of Clã – an album where for the first time the band’s willingness to explore a mixed sound was demonstrated, with the specific writing style of Cruz, to the delight of numerous new fans and the majority of national music critics.
The following year, in the context of Expo 98, they collaborated on the collection Tejo Beat (in which Boss AC , Blasted Mechanism , Zen and Flood also participated ), with the theme “Tempo de Nascer”.
His album O Monster Needs Friends was released in 1999, demonstrating a more careful production and, in general, a less active and more restrained style. The album produced the singles Ouvi Dizer, a duet with Victor Espadinha, and Capitão Romance, with Gordon Gano, lead singer of the acclaimed Violent Femmes. It was also in this year that they collaborated on the album XX Anos XX Bandas, a tribute to the 20 years of Xutos & Pontapés, as a version of the theme Circo de Feras, whose lyrics were expanded.
Also in 2002, Pluto emerged , a slightly more traditional rock band, which includes Cruz in its lineup, as vocalist and secondary guitarist, and Peixe as main guitarist. Another project by Manel Cruz (vocals), which appeared in the same year, were SuperNada , with an album released only in 2012, made up of four more members: Miguel Ramos (bass), Ruca (guitar), Eurico Amorim (keyboards) and Francisco Fonseca (drums).
The themes Capitão Romance and Chaga were part of the soundtrack of the film Rasganço de Raquel Freire.
In 2006, Nuno Prata released his first solo album in which, among others, the remaining former members of Ornatos Violeta participate as guests. In 2008, Manel Cruz launched the project Foge Foge Bandido with a double album, O Amor Dá-me Tesão/Não Foi Eu Que Estraguei .
Keyboardist Elísio Donas later joined the group Per7ume, which he left in August 2008. On May 31, 2010, Zelig ‘s first album was released, a band which guitarist Peixe is part of. Drummer Kinorm was involved in several projects, notably Mata Tu, Patrón!, Plus Ultra, with Gon, from ZEN, and O Bom, o Mau e Azevedo.
In 2012, on February 9, roughly after a decade of inactivity, the band announced three concerts, at the Coliseus in Lisbon, Porto and Micaelense (Ponta Delgada), through their Facebook page.
About a month later, on March 7, his presence at the Paredes de Coura Festival 2012 was also reported.
At the end of 2018, they announced a series of concerts in Portuguese territory in celebration of the 20th anniversary of the album O Monstro Needs Friends. Initially, three concerts were planned: NOS Alive, on the 11th of July; at MEO Marés Vivas, on the 20th of July; and at Festival F, in Faro, on the 6th of September. However, five more concerts would eventually be held: Maré de Agosto, on 23 August, in the Azores; October 31st and November 1st at the Super Bock Arena, in Porto; and in Lisbon, on December 6th at Campo Pequeno and in the early hours of January 1st, 2020, in the New Year celebrations at Terreiro do Paço.