Welsh multi-instrumentalist and singer-songwriter Ali Lacey, better known as “Novo Amor,” took to the stage at The Sinclair in Harvard Square on Nov. 17. Cambridge was the fourth stop in Novo Amor’s sold-out North American tour for his debut solo record “Birthplace.”
This tour is Novo Amor’s first ever in North America. His music bridges the genres of indie rock and folk music, making recognizable use of vocal falsetto and chordal simplicity.
Rachel Baldwin, an indie folk singer-songwriter and Boston local, opened the show for Novo Amor (above).
Throughout the evening, Novo Amor performed songs from “Birthplace” and his previous albums, including “Heiress” — his collaborative album with English producer and songwriter Ed Tullet, who he brought on his tour (above).
The concert included a performance of Terraform, one of Novo Amor and Tullet’s most popular songs from “Heiress.” The song’s title means to transform a planet so as to resemble the earth, especially so that it can support human life. Terraform’s music video features the unaltered story of an actual Indonesian sulfur miner of the active volcano Kawah Ijen, who braves dangerous heat and toxic gases to provide for his family. The video, directed by Sil Van Der Woerd, won over a dozen short film awards.
This use of atmospheric soundscapes and storytelling imagery is pervasive in Novo Amor’s work. His record “Birthplace” sheds light on the issue of plastic pollution in the world’s oceans. The music video of his titular single “Birthplace,” a cinematic rendering of a man walking underwater among ocean life and ultimately being engulfed by plastic waste, won Best Video at the 2018 Association of Independent Music Awards. His vinyl records for Birthplace are also made from recycled material, making each individual record unique in color and hue.
Novo Amor ended the concert with the song “From Gold,” originally written as the score for one of his friend’s feature films. The writing of “From Gold,” he said, ultimately inspired his debut EP, Woodgate, NY, which was released in 2014 and became in some ways the start of his musical endeavors as Novo Amor.