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Dan Amor "Square One" Single Review

Taken from Dan Amor's upcoming album Odds and Ends, Square One is a characterful and contemporary psychedelic indie-folk offering, lyrically candid while musically metaphorical to great effect.

With a simple arrangement and a minimal production that create something distinctly modern-retro, Square One certainly has vibes. Citing influences such as Carol King, Emmit Rhodes and Badfinger, it sounds to me like Badly Drawn Boy and Syd Barrett wrote a song for the Kinks.

Dan Amor on a path by a tree. Dan Amor ar lwybr wrth ochr coeden.

On playing the track, what becomes clear quite quickly is that the cheery melody and musical motifs and unforcedly witty rhyming belie a candid and uncryptic lyrical portrayal of isolation, dejection and defeat, seemingly in plain sight yet going unnoticed. The vocal delivery, proximal reverbs and repeating piano pattern create a surreal sense of accepted disbelief and detachment, like someone in a haze and going through motions. At the same time, the more subtly grooving and intricate bass line is a nice touch that never distracts from the song while also locking down the rhythm section against the minimal kick-snare beat. This all adds up to something with a quirky radio-friendly surface yet distinctly meaningful undertones that could easily be overlooked - something symbolic.

A slightly lengthier single by modern standards, approaching the 4 minute mark, it is still an effortless listen where everything has followed the needs of the song. To superficially split hairs, the track may have been better punctuated without the final repeat section (without feeling like an act of merciless hacking) - with that said, it certainly supports the narrative and I certainly dig it.

A track that has embraced simplicity to create interesting and purposeful depths, Square One is absolutely worthy of your time. Proceeds from this track go to the charity Mind, making it doubly deserving of some spins, airtime and downloads.


“Square One” is out now on Recordiau Cae Gwyn: X / Facebook / Instagram / Linktree

Follow Dan Amor: Spotify / X / Instagram

Artwork for "Square One" by Dan Amor. Gwaith celf "Square One" gan Dan Amor.

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