Delorean – Subiza
Spanish dance outfit Delorean may have cut a few albums before, but with 2010’s Subiza, they finally attracted a wider audience, and it’s not hard to see why. Dreamy synths jut up against frosty keyboards and percussion ranging from cymbals to bongos, all driven home by a wash of melodic vocals and chants. Taken at this surface description, it’s tempting to lump them in with other dance-minded indie electronic acts like, say, Hot Chip, but Delorean veer closer to dance music in the classic sense. Taking elements of the Balearic beat movement from twenty years ago (namely its mix of house, dub, and R&B), the band creates a textured, hypnotic sound that evokes the feel of ’90s dance albums without feeling derivative. Indeed, atmosphere does take precedence here over structure, but Delorean’s soft spot for indie pop gives a few of these songs a bit more backbone. “Simple Graces,” with its soulful groove, and “Infinite Desert”‘s night-on-the-town synths are what is going to appeal most to the pop crowd at first. Yet, it’s the understated pulse of “Stay Close” and the affected vocal hook of “Real Love” that will appeal most to dance and electronic music fans. Occasionally, a few songs feel too similar, almost seeming to based off of the same instrumental track. Repeated spins help dispel some of this, but it is enough to keep the album from being as rewarding as it should be. Subiza may take a little bit longer to unpack for the pop audience, and despite some lyrics dealing with uncertainty and loss, it is sure to win anyone over who’s in for a good time, something the album delivers in spades.