Capital Inicial, playing with feeling

Bernardo pretends to be a civilised chap, but it’s all fake and when no one is looking he likes to turn up the volume, get out the air guitar and do a bit of headbanging. This week he has been headbanging in Brazilian Portuguese. At a Rock in Rio concert. Playing the both the throbbing bass lines and the crunchy guitars in the track Como Se Sente? by Capital Inicial. Got your air guitars ready? Good. Take it away….

The song title means How do you feel? The letras (lyrics) are here. To be honest, I find them a bit cryptic – short clauses or phrases thrown together, as much for their sounds as for their meaning. I won’t try to translate it all but will pick at bits of it…

First verse

Como se sente
De volta ao começo
As falhas, os erros
Tudo tem preço

How do you feel?
Returning to the beginning
The flaws, the errors
Everything has a price


Como se sente
Voltando atrás
Aprenda a lição
Nunca diga nunca mais

How do you feel?
Going backwards (or Climbing down)
Learn the lesson
Never say never

An interesting verse

Sempre presente
O medo de falar
Na frente de todos
O que ninguém quer escutar

Always present
Is the fear of saying
In front of everyone
What no one wants to hear

Related useful vocabulary 1

Apart from “how“, como can also mean “as” or interjections along the lines of what! or why! And como se means “as if” or “as though“. Some examples:

  • Como vai? – how are you?
  • Como segue – as follows,
  • Falando como amigo – speaking as a friend,
  • Diligente como uma abelha – as busy as a bee
  • Como assim? – how so?/why so?
  • Como disse? – what are you saying?/I beg your pardon!
  • Como você está! – What a sight you are!
  • Parece como se – it looks as if

Related useful vocabulary 2

Sentir is a useful verb meaning to feel in a variety of ways (such as to perceive, to have a presentiment, to be moved or affected, to resent, regret, be concerned, be sorry, etc). Note the following:

  • Eu sinto ter que dizer – I am sorry to say
  • Sentir falta de – to miss
  • Vou sentir muito a sua falta – I shall miss you very much
  • Sentir fome – to be hungry
  • Sentir inclinação para – to feel inclined to

But, as in the song title, most of the common “feeling” expressions are used with the reflexive sentir-se. Here are some examples.

  • Sentir-se bem – to feel well
  • Não me sinto bem – I don’t feel well
  • Sentir-se chocado – to be shocked
  • Sentir-se doente – to feel ill
  • Sentir-se feliz – to feel happy
  • Sentir-se só – to feel lonely
  • Sentir-se à vontade com alguém – to feel comfortable with someone
  • Sentir-se à altura de – to feel up to

The related noun is um sentimento – a feeling, sensibility, emotion, sense, perception, sorrow, regretfulness, passion, hunch etc

Capital Inicial have been around for decades and are a big name in Brazilian pop/rock. I have a couple of compilation CDs of theirs. To end this post, here is the popular À Sua Maneira (Your Way/In Your Manner), taken from their 2002 album Rosas e Vinho Tinto (Roses and Red Wine). It’s a fine song.



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