Deluka: Deluka

[25 May 2010]

By Ryan Reed

The cover of Deluka’s self-titled EP is a black and white chiaroscuro of vocalist/guitarist Ellie Innocenti’s face.  Pretty fitting.  Only seconds into the first single, “Cascade”, you’ll get the idea—these fairly straightforward, inoffensive electro-pop tunes basically play like a solo album, anyway, with rhythmic interplay and full band energy displaced in favor of easy, immediate hooks and simple, programmed arrangements.

Innocenti is clearly billed as the star of the show.  She has vocal presence, that’s for sure, bringing swagger and charisma to the otherwise robotic, faceless proceedings.  Problem is, the persona seems borrowed, a facsimile of Karen O’s sexual bravado and Gwen Stefani’s girl power gusto.  Still, that doesn’t mean Deluka doesn’t have its charms.  “Wake Me Up” is a surprisingly nimble cut-and-paste collage of samples and slap bass that nearly makes up for the incredibly annoying “Finito”, which features a guitar part so generic and overused, it’s impossible to trace it to a source.

On this EP, Deluka sounds like a band without an identity. But in today’s musical age of radio clones and bandwagons, this fact will have little or nothing to do with their “success”.

Published at: http://www.popmatters.com/pm/review/125627-deluka-deluka/