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Lisa – 'Love'

  • 2 min read

Regular Broken 8 readers and those with an ear for exemplary dance music will likely be familiar with Deltiimo, the vibrant modern duo of Gary Louca and Bradon Grobler. In recent years the pair have made themselves a central part of the UK’s dance scene, proving their worth as giants of pop music production through tracks such as ‘Look to the Stars’ and ‘Everybody Around the World’.

Before all this came about though, Gary Louca was hard at work forging his sound and refining his skills, writing songs, collaborating with artists, and relentlessly experimenting. An unreleased treasure from these early years, ‘Love’ is a soulful pop album that was built from a series of studio sessions that Gary recorded with singer Lisa between 1993 and 1999. It’s a collection of ten tracks with lyrics by Louca himself, musical compositions from the legendary Philip Graham Owen, and additional compositions from the brilliant Lawrence Dexter.

Although some of the tracks have been previously released with different vocalists, Gary had always admired the ‘specific sound’ that Lisa brought to the songs, and ‘Love’ marks the first time that the original tracks have been released together as a complete piece. Almost quintessentially 90’s, the ten tracks on ‘Love’ marry harmonious soul with emotive pop, blending powerful ballads and Lisa’s astounding vocal talents with easy-listening sensibilities. Tracks like ‘Teardrops Fall’ and ‘Morning Light’ echo with smooth nostalgic tones, while cuts like ‘Love Me Baby’ and ‘One Look’ are infused with the dance sound that’s come to be synonymous with Gary Louca’s name.

‘Sometimes’ is a delicate and evocative ballad that creates a moment of real reflection and wonder, and it’s entirely captivating to hear a record from Gary and Lisa that ditches the big hooks and club-level drops to focus on soul and real, tactile emotion. While ultimately an album of pop-tinged romance, there is a sombre tone to it all when reading more into Lisa’s backstory. A brilliant talent, she had numerous record labels interested in signing her and had the chance to sign to a major contract during the sessions, but she chose to be a session/studio singer as she had a young family at the time. It’s an admirable decision, to chose family over fame and her career, and because of her brave choice, ‘Love’ sounds like a touching tribute to her work and what could have been.

You can buy your own digital copy of ‘Love’ now on CD Baby.

Score: 8.5/10