Esperanza - Esperanza - Albums - Reviews - Soundblab

Esperanza - Esperanza

by Miz DeShannon Rating:7 Release Date:2011-12-05

Do that old fashioned thing of daydreaming, sit back, relax, and imagine spending the day in Pink Floyd's psychedelic studio then flying to dreamy sands at Cafe Del Mar with the guys from Depeche Mode and picking Björk up on the way for a laugh. Now that's what the experiential marketers would call a journey. And it's what Berliners Esperanza call their first album. Well, it's an eponymous album, not actually the beholder of such a long title, but that could be how you'd describe the aural trip their trancy house offering takes you on.

The amount of "Oh, that reminds me of" and "That sounds like" moments, without the use of actual samples, makes for an album which on first listen seems a bit like a series of tracks for a hotel lobby or top notch car adverts. It's a bit like Crystal Fighters gone even more world music than they have already. Each track has sounds relating to the title, as though Esperanza are going down the route of themed house music and using global influences to create a new phenomenon. Now there's a thing - new genre phenomenons.

After about three listens you realise it actually is quite a creative piece, and the album itself has the same peaks, troughs and pacy variety you'd expect from any band. If you're not a listener of dance music regularly, ones ears can block out anything but the beats. Until you get to 'Whale', which is like a fabulous adventure with an experimental rock band. That's the point at which you meet Pink Floyd.

The consistent thread on this album is house music. Pick a genre within that and you'll have pigeon-holed a song on this album according to the samples and sounds used over the top of the beats. 'Wasting Our Time' has dark crackling synths more familiar in 80s electro; 'Sirena' and its acoustic guitar intro is very MGMT, and 'Aliante Giallo' sounds like it could've come out of anyone's record bag from Ibiza with typical uplifting swooshes and 'ooh' vocals. The list goes on, as Shamisen sounding string plucking ('Hanamachi') and top end sitar-like guitar riffs ('Jaipur') take you on an exploration of global proportions.

Quite a decent trip in the end.

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