I’ve always viewed the life of a tourist as both glamorous and slightly sad; the sadness stemming from the fact that the tourist must always leave. Nonetheless, being a “tourist” has its appeal, as Peruvian musician Rui Pereira shows us with his project, Tourista. Established in Lima, their debut EP, Déficit de Atención, is chock full of pop-leaning dance-rock.
Their story is a bit of a lesson on trial and error. After Pereira abandoned his plans to go to Mexico City to record music on a tourist visa, he put together the band alongside drummer Sandro Labenita, bassist Genko, and guitarist David Acuña. Long story short, he went to the beach and recorded a demo which later became Déficit de Atención: a strong, consistent debut that mixes influences from 8-bit electronic music, punk, pop, and rock. Fittingly, across its five tracks, Tourista manages to present a varied sonic palette, ranging from dreamy pop-rock ballads like “Lentes” and “Requiem” to the melodious punk guitars and fast synths of “El Camino.”
The songs’ themes also work as a kind of map of the lives of the young and restless, hence keeping up with the tourist analogy. The punky “El Camino” functions as a protest song about the hardships of artists, while “Flores de Bach” highlights the insecurity and indecision of life inside the frenetic city. But perhaps the highlight of the record is “Thaís,” a song about a young woman who escapes the city and ends up at the beach with a Beatles record playing in her car stereo, only to find that she must always return home.
Tourista have yet to put out a full-length album, but if Déficit de Atención is any indication of what’s to come, then I’m definitely keeping an eye on them.