Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Album Review: Amor de Dias - Street of the Love of Days

Another popular Merge frontman has brought a side project to the Durham-based label. Alasdair MacLean of The Clientele has teamed up with Lupe Núñez-Fernández from Pipas to release Street of the Love of Days under the name Amor de Dias.

The record astounds right away with the seductive and gorgeous “Foxes.” Núñez-Fernández’s vocal performance is captivating and channels the allure of Astrud Gilberto. Throughout the album, she sings in a reserved yet expressive whisper that draws the listen in.

Maybe it’s because I’ve heard MacLean many times before and I never heard her, but when Núñez-Fernández takes the lead I never want her to give it up. Even though she rarely sings louder than mezzo forte, she can still can a tune with little help. Just listen to “Birds.”

Street of the Love of Days never demands the listener’s attention; it waits quietly until he or she notices it. There are no jagged or abrupt sounds and percussion is used sparingly. Moods shift and tempos change, but it’s very subtle.

There are some moments when it seems that Amor de Dias may just fade into the realm of background music, but before it’s too late they’ll hook the listener with a chord too gorgeous to ignore.

Street of the Love of Days is one of the most relaxing albums to come out this year. Its music is therapeutic and inspires more deep breaths than yawns.

Street of the Love of Days will be released on May 17 and Amor de Dias will play the ArtsCenter in Carrboro on May 19.

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