New Robert Delong album 'In The Cards' brings dance beats to alternative music

The eleven-song album is a fresh contribution to the alternative genre.

With a mixture of thought-provoking lyrics, funky beats and fresh musical content, Robert DeLong’s new album “In The Cards” is absolutely worth binge-listening to when you've completely exhausted with the normal Top 40 radio hits.

DeLong’s first album, "Just Movement," was released in 2013, followed by the release of several singles and a mini-album, but no full-lengths — until now.

Released Friday, "In The Cards" features 11 songs, including three he released on a mini-album in 2014. The entire album stays true to DeLong’s unique style as well as the alternative genre he fits into.

The album's songs contain a variety of interesting beats and rhythms, as well as a theme of originality. Each track is individualistic in its style and content, yet all complement the style DeLong established in "Just Movement." The album maintains a relatively laid-back, alternative feel, while still implementing the percussive flair and dance beats that DeLong does so well.

Musically, the album is easy and fun to listen to, but if you’re into looking at the lyrical content of the album, it can be incredibly thought-provoking.

Though it is sometimes vague — as is most alternative music — "In The Cards" appears to touch on love, politics and life in general.

If a typical album has a ballad, "That’s What We Call Love" would almost fit the bill. As the title suggests, it's about love, but the lyrics take a very different stance on romance.

As opposed to most pop music portrayals of love, the song tells the story of a broken relationship, starting with a phone call where DeLong says, “The line is busy, you wonder who he’s calling, ’cause you know, that it’s not you, he must be stepping out."

The story of the potentially unfaithful relationship paired with the refrain, “That’s What We Call Love” leaves the listener with a melancholy feeling and steps out of the common limitations of songs about love.

Sick times yesterday, #loufest - excited to chill with you, detroit, in a couple hours! #chillonthehill

A photo posted by Robert DeLong (@robertdelong) on

"Selling U Something" gives off a very political vibe, with emphatic statements like, “I’ve got a clean-slate West Coast politician for you, you’re gonna like him,” and “Look a little closer baby, everyone’s selling something.”

The album’s title — "In The Cards" — becomes a lyrical motif found in several songs in the album. The songs "In the Cards," "Born to Break" and "Pass Out" all use the album’s title, but in different contexts, talking about life and what's “in the cards” for each person.

The repetition connects the songs in the album and makes listeners question the album’s lyrics — Is there a bigger purpose to the album and what DeLong is trying to say through it?

However, outside of speculation, these questions could only be answered by DeLong himself.

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Reach the reporter at ckierum@asu.edu or follow @KatieKierum on Twitter.

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