Dear and Unfamiliar – Birds of Passage and Leonardo Rosado


A year or so ago I became aware of Birds of Passage aka Alicia Merz, perveyor of dreamy and ethereal music from New Zealand. Her rather lovely album Without the World was re-released on Denovali Records (home of, amongst others, Her Name is Calla)

She has been dabbling with long distance collaborations alongside people like Roof Light producing great tracks like Gable Larch. I know there is more stuff like this around but it seems to have disappeared – lets hope it re-surfaces.

At the end of the month sees the release of a new album on Denovali  of material this time working with Portuguese Leonardo Rosado, entitled Dear and Unfamiliar – he providing the electronics and she the vocals. Both are clearly in the experimental camp (a little more about Leonardo can be found on his Subterminal Tumbr site and music can be found on his Soundcloud pages) but the coming together here on this set of music seems to be a fruitful and enriching combination for the two of them.

Being an experimentalist can be a lonely place and although I was always enthralled by Birds of Passage saintly and ethereal qualities, coming together with Rosado deepens and opens up the music. Two tracks are available to play on the taster Soundcloud page an bode well for the full length item due for release on 28th October (with a lovely red splatter clear vinyl version available), Alicia’s vocals have seldom sounded better than on We’ll Always Have Paris and Rosado’s atmospheric and haunting music creates the ideal swirling sounds against which to place her. Lovely, spacey and captivating stuff, mastered by the great Nils Frahm no less.

Addendum: thanks to Mr Rosado for pointing out the Vimeo video to accompany a third track from the album – Here’s Looking at You Kid – directed by Hugo Goudswaard  , an appropriately opaque approach to this fine track

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