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Amor de Dias
The House at Sea (Merge Records)

02/07/13
By Eric Saeger news@hippopress.com



2/7/2013 - Bossa-nova-infused indie chilldowns from Clientele leader Alasdair MacLean, softened further with the help of Lupe Núñez-Fernández’ guitar and lilting soprano. Mostly the singing is done by MacLean, who gets a little wearisome with his Donovan/Nick Drake half-whisper – there are other ways of telegraphing chill aside from that one-trick approach, not that I need to tell you that, but point of order and all. Beginning as a “Girl From Ipanema”-stylized strum-fest, the record gradually becomes more psychedelic, accomplishing that without oafishness; you barely even notice that’s been going on until the ’60s-stun-guitar solo sneaks into “Viento del Mar.” It’s a bit sparse — the production, recorded by Brian O’Shaughnessy (My Bloody Valentine, Birdie) on ’70s-era equipment, was done in nine days, so there’s very little to the sound aside from the depthless pools of guitar. The overall feel is upbeat, if melodically unfocused — it’s more a long-range vibe thing, not filled with things you’ll find yourself humming five minutes later. So it’s okay and stuff.  BEric W. Saeger





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