Sunnbrella, Heartworn

Wendy Morrill, Contributor
9 June 2023


“I don’t really talk about this one much, so I need to think about it.”

“Patina XL” is what David Zbirka of Sunnbrella is referring to when I ask him if there’s a story behind the last track on his album Heartworn. “Patina XL” is included in the June 2023 episode of _____ mood.

The song is one of two instrumentals on an album otherwise embedded with vocals that remind of Teenage Fanclub and The Radio Dept. paired with loopy beats reminiscent of My Bloody Valentine’s “Soon”. Some songs feature the vocals of Claire Peng and together the two can sound a bit like Canadian indie pop band Stars. This is all very good, needless to say! However, what I like about “Patina XL” as an instrumental is that it starts with a bit of disorderly sound that eventually falls into place.

“I think you got it exactly right,” replied David.

“It basically started as an experiment,” he explained. “I ran some tracks from a different song I was working on through a digital tape delay pedal and messed around with loops for an hour. Then I came back to what I recorded and I found a loop that I liked, which I built the track around. It was then a matter of finding the little phrases and details trapped within the loop and building on them to have the arrangement slowly develop and rise.”

The slightly warped disorder of the song’s start quickly finds a rhythm, but maintains enough weird to keep you listening to its four-minute farewell to the album. And yeah, weird is good – to me anyway.

“For me it serves as a sort of meditation at the end of the album, an opportunity to reflect on the themes explored up until that point,” said David. “I also like the way it sort of fizzles out at the end without fully resolving the crescendo. It makes me want to do it all over again.”

You can hear Sunnbrella do it all live at shows in the UK and around Europe starting end of July. And of course look for Sunnbrella on Bandcamp… all the links at