Cristina Quesada

You Are the One

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You Are the One is the debut LP by Spanish indie pop singer Cristina Quesada. A relative newcomer to Spain's thriving twee scene, the young Quesada signed with Madrid-based indie Elefant Records in 2013 to release Pineapple Princess, an EP of such unbearable lightness, it threatened to float away with each gentle pluck of her ukulele. Largely made up of covers and offering scant accompaniment aside from uke and glockenspiel, it was a sweet but inauspicious debut, to say the least. Quesada's first full-length, while still yieldingly lightweight, does up the ante on production value with some pleasant pop arrangements to fill in the gaps between her demure vocals. Like the EP, You Are the One contains mostly covers culled from sources both classic (French yé-yé singer France Gall,'60s American pop singer Little Peggy March) and contemporary (Elefant labelmates Alpaca Sports, Milkyway, and Niza), and Quesada gamely applies her tremulous voice to the material in no less than five different languages. Beginning with a very genial cover of the Jesus and Mary Chain's "Just Like Honey," Quesada gingerly works her way through Spanish folk-pop, bubbly French synth-pop, and onto a bossa nova cover of ABBA's “Cante (Enquanto Houver Canção)” sung in Brazilian Portuguese. She even tries her hand at Italian and Japanese by the record's end. Her ukulele is mostly absent and the arrangements, courtesy of Elefant labelmates Band à Part, are clean and tidy with a soft effervescence to match Quesada's coy, blushing delivery. With its breezy melodies, soft strings, and summertime vibes, it's a very polite album that works a little too hard not to make a fuss. Despite her multilingual talents, Quesada just doesn't make much of an impression here and multiple spins fail to keep You Are the One from repeatedly dissolving into a small pink cloud.

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