You and me with our long hair on the gold one
After midnight we could feel it all
I go anywhere you want to (Levitation)
Beach House’s first album released in 2015, Depression Cherry, begins with the slow dream pop song Levitation. An amazing track that sets expectations high for the album. Victoria’s vocals are really good and “lazy” (well it gives this sleepy sensation) as usual. Levitation is probably one of the best Beach House tracks.
Sparks begins with a noisy sounding guitar(?) and some drowning melodies in the background. When the vocals kick in, you know it will be something. If someone asked me how Beach House sounded, I would play them this song. It is simply a great dream pop song. The chorus is brilliant; I can’t believe this song wasn’t a gigantic hit.
Space Song starts and your soul leaves your body. There is so much stuff going on in this song that it’s hard to explain it all. The tiny little bass in the background, the unbelievable dreamy keyboard melodies, Victoria’s to-be-classic vocal performance. This song makes me wonder, how many times did they need to record all the keyboards, or when they play it live, do they need more people? You just drown in this song.
Beyond Love delivers another dreamy melody played on a keyboard and a noisy guitar. Are they going just to recycle this method over and over again? It’s not like it’s a bad thing, I actually like it. This song reminds me of the summer; it just sounds like something you would listen in a car while you’re falling asleep after a long day out doing stuff. The lush landscapes that frequently pop up in this album are so good. I have yet to find something that doesn’t disappoint me in this album.
10:37 (why just 10:37?) has this hard hitting, slow, drum going from the beginning to the end of the song. This song lacks the keyboard melodies in some parts, but that’s alright. I mean, this song sounds like another track. The chorus is pretty good tho.
PPP kicks off with something that reminds me of children songs. I am still not sure why, but it is just so. The singing in this song has a really dreamish tone. Does Victoria just wake up in the middle of the night to record the vocals? It was this song that made me think that the band was TRULY recycling the same formula over and over again. The final minutes of this song are some real good stuff. I’m often wondering whether it’s a keyboard or a guitar playing the lines.
Wildflower, ah yes, another Beach House song that begins exactly like the others. Victoria’s softly sung vocals are now getting way too overused. The same “we begin with some LUSHY melodies, and then we GET TO THE vocals and we just COVER you with a blanket of our comfy songs” formula is back again. We could say that this song is really forgettable.
I am beginning to think that Alex and Victoria can write some good melodies, but overall (or at least in this album) they are just running out of ideas. At least, Bluebird is the most original of all the songs on the album, with its more non dream pop-oriented drums. But overall this is a forgettable album. It just sounds like the same song over and over again. If you haven’t noticed, I have described all the songs almost the same. Dreamy vocals, pretty sounding keyboard melodies and some distorted guitars in some tracks. But I have to say that first four songs are one of the finest moments in Beach House’s whole discography.
So let’s give ratings.
Vocals: 8.5 I really appreciate Victoria’s singing.
Instrumentation: 7.4 it had its moments. Especially the distorted guitar moment. But overall it just had ambient sounding sounds (sounding sounds ok) and fine melodies.
Originality: 4 the fact that all the songs begin to sound the same and that you forget the album so easily drags it down.
Thank Your Lucky Stars
Just two months after Depression Cherry, Beach House release another album. No one expected this one to come. I remember listening to it some times and I actually liked it, but let’s see if it survives…
alright, let’s do it.
“Thank Your Lucky Stars” kicks off with “Majorette”, another classic sounding Beach House song. It reminds me of Cocteau Twins, probably because they’re both DREAM POP. Victoria’s vocals sound quite different this time, like if she actually tried to make something original. This song is quite original for Beach House; maybe they’re trying not to overuse the same formula.
The song fades out and “She’s So Lovely” begins. Wow. Another original Beach House song! the instruments sound remarkably good and it feels like they mix together. The thick, low, keyboard in the verse and when the guitar begins playing its tunes are the best part of this song. It seems like Beach House are stepping up their music in this album, but let’s see if it stays this good for the rest of the album.
“All Your Yeahs” (wow that sounds like the name of a record label) starts with this repetitive note played on a guitar(?) while Victoria begins singing already from the first second. But then when the note changes, everything changes. The song builds up with this weird, mysterious atmosphere. When the chorus begins, you might think “wow this is some real good pop.” Because that’s exactly what I did. After the first chorus the atmosphere kind of disappears, but that’s not a bad thing. In the final moments of this song, it becomes a magnificent song. The way that the vocals blend with the instrumentation is incredible.
Out of nowhere that track ends and “One Thing” begins. Its slow drum makes you excited for this song. Then the distorted guitar kicks in and the keyboard harmonizes with it. At the time that the vocals began, it reminded me of some old Britpop. Don’t ask me why. The guitar is the best part of the song, no doubt. Overall, I find this song quite forgettable. The ending of the song surprised me; I had never expected some kind of guitar solo from these guys.
“Common Girl” begins with this almost chiptuney keyboard and Victoria’s vocals. This song uses the good ol’ Formula. But at the same time, the song feels too minimalistic for being part of the Formula, so I guess that’s ok. The drums start after one minute into the song, and they don’t do much after that. This one is a forgettable song. In some parts of the song, this really melodic keyboard line came in, it was nice.
Another slow song from Beach House starts off. But this time, it reminds me of Björk. Once again, do not ask me why. You know what? This track to track review thing is not really my kind of stuff, so this will be the last one that I write like this.
now, my opinions in general about this album:
“Elegy To The Void” was the best song on the album. It was so good I can’t describe it. This was the most original Beach House record of the year, but it still had some forgettable songs.
vocals: 8.4 a little bit more original than Depression Cherry