The Black Heart Procession

Amore del Tropico

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The Black Heart Procession took a chapter out of the Nick Cave book of cool for their fourth album, Amore del Tropico. It's a sultry, mystical book of romance. The crime of love is the culprit in this murder mystery and the Black Heart Procession mix a tantalizing session of lounge and blues aesthetics, dark guitars, and lush string arrangements. It's an epic move for this Californian foursome -- the concept is brilliant and musically the Black Heart Procession are sonically at their best. Amore del Tropico starts off with the ten-second orchestration titled "The End of Love." The cinematic approach taken from the beginning sets the scene; "Tropics of Love" and "Why I Stay" shimmy with a Cuban edge. Vocalist Paulo Zappoli croons with a sexy flair while sifting through a world without heart. Steps are retraced on the sinister storm of "The Waiter #4," while "Did You Wonder" spirals around megalomania and Tobias Nathaniel's pinch-hitting guitar work. As the album draws to a close, elements of discovery are more apparent. "Before the People" presents the suspects while muted vocal distortions of "Fingerprints" linger around eerie violins. In the end, the soul who was searching for an answer falls to fate. However, the Black Heart Procession believe in the light on the other side and the countrified haze of "The One Who Has Disappeared" is an obvious reason why. Amore del Tropico gives the gift of love's bruised heart. The mystery of love's pain is never really solved and that's the beauty of this record.

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