Album Review: REYKO – Fantasía

The Breakdown

At first you feel like you have the measure of the album as a bright indie offering but by the mid point of 'Fantasía', you realise this is far more creative than that.

Having spent 2022 touring the UK and Europe to promote their second album ‘Pulse’, indie duo REYKO present the new album ‘Fantasía’. A collection of woozy, moody and yet also often energetic and breezy tracks, the album presents an intriguing, multi-faceted and always fun listen.

Opening with the vibrant ‘Tú y Yo’, a track sung exclusively in Spanish, paying homage to the duo’s roots, the track instantly displays the contracts that can be found throughout the album – reflecting, soft, almost whispered lead vocals against a bright guitar led, indie backdrop. Sonically reminiscent of The Ting Tings, the opener is pleasingly simplistic and easy going, capturing a whimsical freedom emphasised by the wild splashes of synth which dip in and out in the latter stages.

Track 2, ‘The Strangest Thing’ is the first track sung in English and introduces the quirky yet grounded and relatable lyricism which the band have become known for. Taking a more garage-rock-come-dream-pop approach, the tracks driving backdrop of fuzzy guitars and high energy drums creates a grinding backdrop against the ever soft and whispery lead vocal line.

Elsewhere on the album, ‘Leaving Station’ takes a witty swipe at the struggles of travelling across Europe and all the paperwork needed. Slipping between a minimalistic, spoken verse and an atmospheric, high octane chorus packing choppy guitars, pulsing bass, bouncing off-beat drums and soaring whooshes of synths, the tracks building and contrast is really effective. The result is a track which is one of the more immediate stand outs from the album, a biting, fun track which I’m sure is a fan fave.

‘Bienvenidos’ mixes samples field recordings of a school playground with driving strummed guitars, punching drums, dark synths and whooshing atmospherics to create a fittingly bouncy instrumental interlude. ‘All I Ever Do’ introduces the first male vocal led track on the album with a more considered, downtempo and emotive offering, drenched in reverb to create a moody, shoe-gaze influenced soundscape.

Towards the end of the album acoustic ballad, ‘North To South’ blends picked acoustic guitar with subtle whooshes of wind int he background creating a sense that you’re on a long road trip through route-66.

Closing with the reverberating tones of 6pm, a melancholic, beautiful instrumental, the true artistry and creativity of the band is emphasised. There’s no restrictions over what the band’s sound encompasses, this isn’t an indie album but more of a creative outlet, sometimes in Spanish, sometimes in English – sometimes moody and atmospheric, at others vibrant and energetic. It’s a great thing to hear music like this, where artists feel they are free enough to simply do what they want to, make the music they like whilst also managing to create their own lane, their unique, strikingly modern sound.

There’s no doubting there’s some special moments across ‘Fantasía’. I had a lot fo fun listening to it and pulling apart, and it’s had a lasting impact on me. At first you feel like you have the measure of the album as a bright indie offering but by the mid point of ‘Fantasía’, you realise this is far more creative than that. Listen for yourself below.

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