“We wanted it to simply enter the world and exist”
It has just occurred to me that this is the first Dream-Pop/Shoe Gaze review that I’ve sat down to write, where the lead vocalist, or indeed any member of the band, is female! What does that tell you, me, us, about the music industry??
Earlier today, Jo Carson of the UK band, Shallows, posted this on InstaTwitter, and oh boy, does she have a point!
Where are they indeed…if I ever have the opportunity to meet Victoria Legrand, I might just ask the question – Why the female void?
Which leads nicely into ‘Elegy to the Void’, the first release from new Beach House album ‘Thank Your Lucky Stars’ – the shock-horror, “quelle surprise” release of 2015, coming just a matters of weeks after the launch of ‘Depression Cherry’, an album which was received with an indifferent “plus ça change” shrug by most music reviewers this side of the pond.
“Thank Your Lucky Stars is our sixth full length record. It was written after Depression Cherry from July 2014 – November 2014 and recorded during the same session as Depression Cherry. The songs came together very quickly and were driven by the lyrics and the narrative. In this way, the record feels very new for us, and a great departure from our last few records. Thematically, this record often feels political. It’s hard to put it into words, but something about the record made us want to release it without the normal “campaign.” We wanted it to simply enter the world and exist.”
‘Thank Your Lucky Stars’ has been greeted with a bit more verve and a lot more excitement than it’s predecessor, and on listening to ‘Elegy into the Void’ one can understand why.
“Deep beneath the waves
White-winged birds of May
Run from hollow hills
Walk into the night”
Dark, intense, uneasy, ‘Elegy into the Void’ is Twin Peaks meets Alice in Wonderland as conceived of by the Beatles in Revolver/MMT mode. It’s the anti-gaze of it’s genre; a musical mist that descends upon the listener, enshrouding them in a twilight of shadows and half light.
Victoria Legrand’s vague and sultry vocal is washed over with cloudy harmonies, giving it a bewitching, almost ghostly quality. The brooding semi-monotonous electro-classical thrum is given a hint of light and life by some sharp guitar chords and a slow build of dramatic, looping sequences. These are interspersed towards the end, by comets of synth, redolent of those echoey beeping transmission sounds one used to hear on old NASA space footage.
Mission accomplished. Beach House have journeyed into the void and brought their fans with them, to experience the dark but fascinating wonders of the world beyond their own.
Usual Selly Welly and Social Wocial paraphernalia here:
“Elegy To The Void ” is out now.
FULL ALBUM STREAM of Thank Your Lucky Stars: https://youtu.be/FQyiZiwklgw