Music review: Amor

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A new quartet with an illustrious pedigree, Glasgow’s Amor are an odd proposition on paper; a party-ready disco band comprising one avant-garde musician and songwriter (Richard Youngs), one Turner Prize-nominated artist (Luke Fowler), a Norwegian minimalist composer (Michael Francis Duch) and the drummer from Franz Ferdinand (Paul Thomson). Their music is light and accessible, but the richness of their cultural reference points shouldn’t be underestimated; it clearly wasn’t by the educated throng bustling around Mono’s low stage at this label show for Night School Records.

Mono, Glasgow

****

They lined up withThomson playing stand-up drums and bongos, Youngs on keyboard and wonderfully fragile vocals, Fowler, headphones tightly around his neck, creating electronic sounds on a computer, with Duch in the background – physically, not sonically – with an organic-sounding double bass. They record their music at Green Door Studios with Richard McMaster of the sublime Golden Teacher, and those sucked in by the infectious Paradise/In Love An Arc single earlier this year will find the sound transfers beautifully to the stage.

Anyone who knows Amor will be unsurprised to hear that while that deep, groove-heavy Paradise Garage-style disco was the flavour of the set, there were other, more subtle sounds at work. Love An Arc’s limber, unhurried intro contained just the right amount of chiming piano and rich, real bass sounds, while there were also hints of squealing prog keys, more relaxed Balearic house beats and the bass-heavy groove of dub reggae. This is no side project, but a vital, thoughtfully-created group of the kind Glasgow seems exceptionally good at producing.