The Balkan barnstormer delivers with aspirational hipster rap and programmed beats
Bulgaria might have weathered brickbats from sections of the British media last year, but there’s no better riposte than progressive music to prove you’ve more to offer than just Dimitar Berbatov and baked cabbage. Step forward Balkan barnstormer DENA. Mixing up 21st-century DIY programmed beats, ’80s house/techno/soul and ’90s video games (noises throughout sound like they were sampled from the SNES), Denitza Torodrova invites us into her aspirational life where ‘Cash, Diamond Rings, Swimming Pools’ are things to covet and other people’s partners are attainable (‘Bad Timing’). The standout track is ‘Flashed’, recorded in her adopted Berlin with former King Of Convenience Erlend Oye – proof that European integration brings good things.