Amor de Dias Street of the Love of Days(Merge) Buy it from Insound
Amor de Dias is a group formed by Alasdair MacLean of The Clientele and Lupe Núñez-Fernández of indie duo Pipas. Street of The Love of Days, their first release, was recorded in Spain and the UK. It is not, however, a vain exercise in musical tourism. Instead, there is a fine tuning of musical frequencies that makes this side project a delight.
The album took three years to complete, but there is nothing belabored about it, no Chinese Democracy here. The arrangements serve the songs. Case in point is Birds, which flies by with a throbbing bass, jarring percussion, and sound effects. At the other side of the spectrum is Bunhill Fields, which evokes Love’s Forever Changes, complete with horns and chamber strings.
Foxes sets the tone for the album, opening with a soft Erik Satie piano that is joined by a cello and what sounds like a bouzouki. As it draws to a close, Lupe starts to sing in Spanish about empty streets at sunset. This atmospheric piece leads to more familiar territory in House of Flint, which has MacLean’s songwriting imprint. Late Mornings recreates a sunny seaside romp before taking a psychedelic detour.
Throughout, the songwriting is remarkable. Everything here has a place and a time, we’re only passing by, sings MacLean in Harvest Time. Recorders and drums give this brooding song a medieval feel. Dream (Dead Hands) showcases Lupe’s voice and combines a wistful girl group melody with a celestial harp. I See Your Face has shamelessly romantic lyrics and a lively bossanova beat. Lyrical abstractions abound, such as in the title song, but there’s still space for pillow talk in songs like Wild Winter Trees.
The album’s fifteen tracks are arranged around the themes of nature and the passage of time. The brevity of the songs gives the album an impressionistic effect, each a snapshot of image and emotion. Those flashpoint moments, however brief, will still resonate on the listener.
Street of The Love of Days is intimate and serene, sometimes pastoral, but there’s nothing here that would make you miss the city, unless you hate bonfires and the crisp rustle of autumn leaves.19 May, 2011 - 08:29 — Angel Aguilar