Beach House is a dream-pop duo from Baltimore who have released four albums since their formation in 2004. Their newest record — Bloom— officially drops today. Unfortunately, in this age of modern technology, highly anticipated albums (like this one) get leaked and disseminated months in advance. This album has been floating around for quite a while. Starting today, you can and should buy an official, legal copy.
Beach House is one those bands that I heard a lot about before I had any of their records. When their 2008 record, Devotion, was hot on college radio, you couldn’t swing a dead cat without hitting a kid talking about how great Beach House is. That was when I was in a rut of not buying or even listening to new music, so I didn’t pay any attention to what the kids were saying. Then their 2010 record Teen Dream became an even bigger deal with the kids. By then, I had gotten back into the habit of buying and listening to new things, and I finally got around to giving them a go. I ended up getting Devotion, and I like it a lot. Even though I was finally on board with Beach House, I didn’t become a completeist superfan. I’m still not. This new record, though… It’s going to make big fans out of a lot of people.
Although they have released the song “Myth” as a single, they’re saying that Bloom is meant to be experienced as an album rather than as individual songs. The crazy thing about this project that I’ll be doing all year long is that I’ve always been an “album” kind of guy. I don’t put my ipod on shuffle. I listen to entire albums front to back before moving on to something else. This entire project flies in the face of that. On a related note, although I prefer listening to entire albums, I love making mix tapes for friends. Go figure.
Back on task… The reviews are already in for this album, and they’re good. Everyone is loving this record. This band seemingly can do no wrong. The reviews are stronger and the superlatives more abundant with each successive album. Not willing to rest on their laurels, they continue to work hard and make better and better music. All this sort of reminds me of another Baltimore duo. Wye Oak keeps working harder and harder and they are getting recognized for it.
I’m not buying into some of the ridiculous praise that’s being haphazardly thrown around in Beach House’s direction. People are saying crazy things like “as lush and as dreamy as Cocteau Twins”. I think that’s taking it a bit too far, and it’s clear that people who say that don’t actually listen to Cocteau Twins. My beef with some of the verbage being used notwithstanding, I’ll agree that this is a really great record. Probably a career-defining record.
Without further ado, here’s today’s song:
“Other People” by Beach House
When the shops open, go to a locally owned bricks-and-mortar store to buy your copy of Bloom. If that isn’t an option, order it from Sub Pop here. If you don’t like physical copies or don’t want to wait for the mail, just get a legal digital download from whatever your favorite source is.
Beach House is playing a sold-out show in New York City tonight, and will go on a European tour immediately following. Then a select tour of the US in the summer. Catch them if you can.