... with love from Spain
Longstanding Spanish talent Dennis Cruz achieves a career milestone this October with the release of his debut album, Roots. The ten-track LP draws inspiration from Cruz’s life experiences, resulting in a body of work that encapsulates the sounds and musical styles that have led him to where he is today.
The journey begins with La Ratonera, a Spanish-themed cut that sets the tone with a warm underlying groove and P. Rivas’ enchanting vocal hooks. Los Tamales soon arrives, released as a July single ahead of the album, before Good Old Days completes proceedings on the A Side. A collaboration with minimal-maestro Ian Ludvig, the result is a stripped-back dancefloor number that feels ripe for the late night hours.
Ecua takes charge on the B Side, upping the tempo with resonant kick-hat combos and plenty of flamenco-inspired swing. What U Doing comes next, as Leo Wood’s harmonic vocal tones perfectly complement Cruz’s hard-edged, groove-led bassline, opening neatly into Bend. The three-minute piece showcases the Spaniard’s love of jazz and salsa throughout.
We’re treated to another piece of teamwork on Go Down, with iconic Jamaican singer Lee Scratch Perry featuring on top of a low-slung, rhythmic backbone, paving the way for Ahora Todo Va (Dub). Josh Butler’s influence can be felt right from the get go, as four-four drum patterns converge on spicy, latin-fuelled lyrical samples.
Te Quiero Cantar acts as the penultimate track, bringing us more funky, house-driven flavours before Back Again brings things to an ebullient close. The final collaborative offering with Iuliano Mambo takes us on a journey through punchy percussion and swinging synth build ups, rounding off an eclectic body of work that looks set to light up dancefloors across the world this year.
Roots showcases the many facets of Dennis Cruz’s production capabilities. The album embodies the life experiences that have defined his career; the moments of progression and elation, from fresh-faced up-and-comer to established musical presence. At the heart of the LP lies an inherent Spanish theme - a nod to the country and culture that Dennis calls home. It’s playful, joyful and built to make people dance, three traits personify this talented producer today.