+1 I own a pair of AE Strands, and I neither love them nor hate them. They're slightly less comfortable than all the other shoes I own in that price range (To Boot NY and Johnston & Murphy), and although the Strands may be better constructed than those other brands, I don't see any evidence of it yet.
The Strands are certainly blobby and clunky compared to my C&J Westbournes, but that doesn't seem like a fair comparison. Those two brands aren't in the same market niche, and those two models do not serve the same purpose. Unfortunately, my Westbournes are no more comfortable than my Strands. And that makes me sad.