Amor de Días – Free MP3 and UK live dates (including London Union Chapel show with Howe Gelb)
aaamusic | On 26, Apr 2011
Amor de Días
Street of the Love of Days
UK Release: Porcini Music
Digital–17 May, 2011,
CD–13 June, 2011
(US Release: Merge Records
Digital, CD, vinyl–17 May, 2011)
Amor de Días (Spanish for ‘love of days’) is the name of the—until now—secret new group of Alasdair MacLean of the Clientele and Lupe Núñez-Fernández of Pipas. Street of the Love of Days, their debut album, will be released in the UK on 17 May as a digital download and 13 June on CD.
Finding common ground as painters as well as musicians, and having regularly appeared onstage together (often with Lupe reading the text of The Clientele’s ‘Losing Haringey’) they decided to collaborate on a project of their own.
Wandering in Madrid, Alasdair noticed a street sign for Calle del Amor de Dios, which he mistakenly translated as “Street of the Love of Days”. The name struck him as a great title, even after Lupe corrected him (he was actually on the Street of the Love of God).
Written between Spain and the UK, “Street of the Love of Days” was recorded at Regal Lane studios in London over the course of three years. Alasdair and Lupe quietly put together the record in evenings and weekends, as they called in local friends (Louis Philippe) and visiting musicians (Damon and Naomi, Gary Olson) for sessions, building up their songs’ multifaceted arrangements and vocal harmonies with harps, bouzoukis, strings, recorders and brass.
These songs took shape as each of the writers helped the other to finish lines, suggested lyrical images or wrote harmonies or arrangements to complete each other’s ideas. Shared inspirations (“Surrealist poetry, myths, London, Madrid, books of days, forests, landscape, lullabies”) give the album a consistent feel, as do the dual Spanish guitars that form the core of the sound, along with Howard Monk’s polyrhythmic drums and Danny Manners’ bass.
The result is a focused, cohesive jewel of chamber-pop, reflecting a little of Gal Costa and Caetano Veloso’s elegant brand of bossa nova; a little of Erik Satie’s haunting night music, and a large dose of spooky psychedelic folk. The beautiful harmony singing throughout the record makes it all their own however, nowhere more obviously than on “Harvest Time”, which was recorded first by Amor de Días, and only afterwards by the Clientele (on 2009’s ‘Bonfires on the Heath’). The version here is the original, primal take, previously unheard.
At times spare and empty, at times rich with instrumental texture, at times jazz-tinged and hypnotic, Street of the Love of Days is of a quality to rival anything either Alasdair or Lupe has recorded before.
Amor de Días “Bunhill Fields”
Sat 8 June, Union Chapel, opening for Howe Gelb with A Band of Gypsies
Sun 12 June @ The Lexington, London (afternoon album launch, free)
Fri 17 June @ Scandinavian Church, Liverpool
Sat 30 July, Indietracks, (near Derby)
Press photos/bios/media etc: