Amber Arcades – Fading Lines
Dutch musician Annelotte de Graaf releases her debut album as Amber Arcades. And it is dreamy. Pinch yourself before faded, silky hooks and sun-bleached vocals lull you into a false sense of dozy serenity; there's an ironclad core within these clouds, and de Graaf navigates the potentially turbulant skies of dreampop with a firm hand.
A legal aide in human rights law by day, and a supremely focused songwriter by night, de Graaf assembled a crack team of studio band mates (inc. Real Estate drummer Jackson Pollis and famed punk producer Ben Greenwood) to record an album as determined as it is dizzying.
Give in to Fading Lines' understated dreamworld and drown in the title track's pushing, persuasive guitars, the old-fashioned romance of Perpetuum Mobile or the woozy storytelling borrowed from Teen Dream-era Beach House on I Will Follow. Single Right Now is intimate euphoria, and the record's stripped-back closer White Fuzz is perfectly pitched, bitter-sweet melancholia. Blissful, elegant records like this do not come about by chance.