Lyrics by Luís de Camões
Music by José Francisco Cavalheiro – Fado Menor do Porto
LINA_ – Vocals
John Baggot – Piano, Moog Bass and Synths
Pedro Viana – Guitarra Portuguesa
Produced by Justin Adams

“De pena tomei Amor
Porque o não entendi;
Agora que o conheci,
Mata-me com desfavor.”

Luís Vaz de Camões

Camões, Justin Adams, and Desamor in LINA_’s new Fado

Three years ago, the fado singer LINA_, along with producer and musician Raül Refree, came together to explore the repertoire of Amália, surprising the world with a bold album celebrated across the board. Now, she returns even more powerful, not only in her unmistakable voice but also in the composition of some songs. This time, she collaborates with the British producer and musician Justin Adams, focusing on the poetry of Camões.

For now, there’s the single “Desamor”, and in early 2024, the new album, aptly titled “Fado Camões,” will be released. This new song delineates the renewed path, where familiarity and novelty go hand in hand. We can recognize some elements that fascinated in her previous work, such as her effortless elegance. However, there’s a spaciousness and a breathing space between voice, piano, guitar, and near silence that create new landscapes filled with pain, accuracy, and dignity.

“It’s a song that speaks about childhood loves,” reflects LINA_. “The poet wants a child to be able to understand the poem and that’s why he places it in a young girl’s mouth. Because of this characteristic of the poem, I wanted there to be sonorous moments in the studio, with a closeness to the sound of a music box, evoking a certain childlike universe or reminding us of childhood loves.”

It’s simultaneously a new and recognizable LINA_ we see, after her successful collaboration with Catalan producer Raul Refree, known for his work with artists like Rosalía, Sílvia Pérez Cruz, or Thurston Moore. Their album received numerous accolades, such as the World Music Chart’s Album of the Year in 2020, the Carlos do Carmo Award in 2021, and more.

Now, a new chapter unfolds with Justin Adams, a renowned British musician, composer, and producer who has worked with artists like Robert Plant, Rachid Taha, Tinariwen, and others. He has a history of taking solid, tradition-rooted structures, whether in blues, folk, or African music, and providing them with fresh perspectives. Hence, it’s no surprise that he’s now exploring fado and LINA_’s voice.

Besides the grace and simplicity surrounding her voice and the crystalline chords of the Portuguese guitar that evoke fado, there’s also an Africanized atmosphere and rhythm, as if the duo has ventured to discover the connections between fado and Africa. This album, as you’ll hear, places Camões’ poetry in settings of melancholy and suspension but also in celebration of existence. In the studio, LINA_’s voice is accompanied by the Portuguese guitar of Pedro Viana, piano, keys, and arrangements by John Baggott, a musician and composer known for his work with Massive Attack and Portishead, and, in two songs, Ianina Khmelik on the violin. On the upcoming tour starting in February next year, LINA_ will be joined by Pedro Viana on the Portuguese guitar, as well as Ianina Khmelik on the violin, acoustic piano, and synthesizers, with the possibility of John Baggott joining on select dates.

A new chapter is beginning to be written now.  Camões is on her horizon, and there’s a renewed sound where her expressive, sensory, pulsating, and vibrant vocal is still and always at the center, ready to touch our hearts.