From the unique magazine that accompanied their ‘Little Sparks EP’ to the numerous pop-up shops they opened for a single day around the country for the unveiling of ‘Little Sparks’ itself, Delorentos have become synonymous with quirky album releases in the last few years.
We weren’t surprised, so, to hear they were releasing their long-awaited acoustic album as a limited edition (only 147 copies were made) in hand-made, individually numbered cases for Record Store Day. We were surprised, however, to be exclusively given a copy of the album ahead of its release.
‘Unbroken, Untied’ is a collection of 13 acoustic tracks, nine of which are reworked versions of previous releases while there are four brand new tracks. Whether they are songs taken from Delorentos’ forthcoming studio album ‘Night Becomes Light’ remains unseen for now.
It’s one of these new tracks, Home Again which sets the wheels in motion. It’s a slow-building track about the day to day struggles of life. It grows and grows until it reaches a perfect peak of ‘ooh, ooh’s’. The memorable melodies which saw the foursome win the Choice Music Prize two years haven’t left them despite the temporary unplugging of instruments.
Hunting, despite being enjoyable in a live setting, doesn’t quite reach the desired standard acoustically, perhaps why it only made the ‘Little Sparks EP’ rather than the album proper. Despite Níal Conlan’s masterful mandolin skills, you “can’t help feeling something’s missing,” which, ironically, is a lyric lifted from the song itself.
Bullet In A Gun, according to the band, is the song which sparked them into life after the lows of their near break-up. It also became the inspiration behind this entire album when they performed it on a tiny side street in Madrid just hours after it was written. It’s every bit as good here as it was then.
Show Me Love is a gorgeous indie-pop tune which rivals James Vincent McMorrow in the falsetto stakes before breaking down into an addictively repetitive, singalong-inducing chorus of “Show me love, show me.” City’s Still Warm once again showcases Kieran McGuinness’ unerring ability to scribe pensive, engaging lyrics which people can relate to in a number of ways.
The most impressive rework of an older song the piano-led brilliance of Basis Of Everything. Well known to be one of their catchiest riffs, the way in which Delorentos have completely broken the song down and built it from the bottom up again is breathtaking. this track alone would make queueing outside your local record store tonight more than worth the wait. The fourth and final new track, The Hardest Time closes out the album in a sombre and reflective tone.
Delorentos have had their fair share of ups and downs in the last few years. With ‘Unbroken, Untied’, they have explored and expressed these beautifully, all sealed in one neat little package.
‘Unbroken, Untied’ will be available at the following shops on 19th April:
Tower Records, Dawson Street, Dublin 2
Freebird Records, Wicklow Street, Dublin 2
Rollercoaster Records, Kieran Street, Kilkenny
Zhivagos, Shop Street, Galway
Plugd Records, Triskel Arts Centre, Tobin Street, Cork