Published Jan 23, 2020It's no easy feat to make interesting dance music, and anyone who attempts it deserves, at the very least, to be commended for their efforts. Σtella's latest album, The Break, is effervescent and bright. It embodies all the sparkle of good disco, but none of the soul, and as such, falls short of inspiring anything beyond a polite tapping of the toe.
The Break is strongest when it leans into its '80s sensibilities. The album's title track feels reminiscent of Stacey Q, for its bass-y synth and Σtella's velvety vocals. "Simon Says," the similarly retro third song, features a breezy, tropical-sounding melody over which Σtella sings of her sophisticated, Tesla-owning lover, whom she aptly describes as "a renegade of a distant age."
The album is not without its redeeming moments of fun, and will, no doubt, successfully pander to nostalgic listeners. Still, the glittery synths and upbeat rhythms come just shy of making up for what ultimately feels like a collection of hollow, unfinished songs. (Arbutus)