Delorean’s “Subiza”

“Subiza is an album that gets even better the more you listen to it. With each listen, you’ll discover a new beat or a new yelp or a new instrument.” -Victoria Phetmisy

Luke Goddard

out of 10

March 30, 2010
True Panther Sounds

Delorean makes the kind of music that belongs to those summers where the beach sky is a beautiful gradient from pink to orange. Perhaps the Spanish four-piece prefers it this way, as their newest album, Subiza, named after the island it was recorded on, reminds me of those conspicuous hours where you can’t tell whether it’s night or morning or passing into day—but you know it’s summer.

The album’s opener “Stay Close” instantly reminds me of a summer night spent laughing and reminiscing around a bonfire. The ongoing flickering percussion, ever-building tension and beautiful female vocals send you on a dizzy ride. You will want to dance—or at least bob your head, a smile half-escaping your lips. It’s also hard not to want to instantly adore the unusual yelps and swirling vocals in the background as “Stay Close” smoothly comes to its end and you’re left in a haze of keyboard melodies and lingering, soft vocal curls.

I have to admit—I’m a bit of a sucker for some dancey-pop music. Give me a good, repetitive beat, throw in some cute, ethereal sounding vocals, and it’s almost a given that I will enjoy it. Delorean hits the heart of Balearic disco by modernizing it and keeping it warm. They straddle the line between cinematic dance pop, 90’s house, and some cute disco reminding me a bit of Cut Copy and some Passion Pit, with a dash of sugar and less salt in your wounds.

Much of the rest of the album has these chopped up vocals, glimmering keyboard riffs, and warm, summery air. While listening to it, I didn’t even realize that the songs were changing. They all flow into one another effortlessly and without losing their individual personality.

Listen to “Grow” and you’ll be able to pick up on that faint guitar. Add in those ghostly female vocals and singer/bassist Ekhi Lopetegi’s accented, careworn, yet emotionally vibrating voice singing, “Don’t you tell me that you’re free to do what you want” over the ongoing, catchy keyboard melodies and you’ll be left floating.

“Simple Graces” introduces some neat drums, beating right into your ears. The old-school Amen-style break they included gives the album that fun and different vibe, though it was a bit of a surprise to my ears when it finally popped up. But no less than a few seconds later and Lopetegi’s voice is echoing over the drums. In an instant you’re reminded of the summery beaches that Subiza is so eagerly wanting to give you.

As the album comes to its end, “Warmer Places” sends you a wakeup call. It reminds you of the fast-moving bodies dancing on foreign lands. And that 90’s house beat will definitely leave you wanting to move until it’s over. And when it is, you’ll want to start it again.

Subiza is an album that gets even better the more you listen to it. With each listen, you’ll discover a new beat or a new yelp or a new instrument.

And with the mesh of sounds, the album is still simple and nostalgic—and these are not negative qualities. It is nicely mixed and airy, rendering the summer days just perfectly. Anymore of the chopped up vocals, or the looping beats, or a haphazard mix of more instruments and we’d have an overcast.

Whether their paying homage to hip-hop, taking a bit from the 90’s or kicking it over to that Balearic disco, Delorean’s soft, swirling vocals and contagious riffs will keep your head spinning—in a good way.