Beach House’s Teen Dream, The Best Album I Never Thought I’d Like.

by oz on November 18, 2010

Beach House is my second installment of great albums I initially overlooked in 2010. For some reason I automatically lumped them into the same category as bands like Animal Collective and assumed that I wasn’t cool enough. Beach House is either more accessible or I’ve finally discovered my inner-hipster.

I gave up baths long ago because I didn’t like washing my face with water I was sitting in, but I remember them being relaxing. Listening to Teen Dream is like taking a bubble bath without getting wet.  Its the perfect album for atmosphere , to play in the background without creating distractions. Its brilliantly dreamy without being pretentious. Calling out a few tracks is difficult because Teen Dream is best consumed as a full meal, but if I were forced to do so, Id mention  Zebra, Silver Soul, and Walk In The Park.

Beach House is the creation of Victoria Legrand and Alex Scally from Baltimore. Alex works the slide guitar while Victoria provides the keys, organ and  vocals. Teen Dream is their third release. I’ve yet to listen to the other two.

Beach House – Zebra

Beach House – Norway

{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Pablohoney November 18, 2010 at 8:57 am

I had the exact same reaction. The album slowly grew on me and it has been on heavy rotation for the past month or so. I’m looking forward to catching them in February at Webster Hall.

Woody November 18, 2010 at 9:44 am

I was also pleasantly surprised by this. This is one of those great albums to listen to on the headphones at night when you can’t sleep.

Since you mentioned baths, I thought I would share that I like to fart in baths. The bubbles always make me laugh.

Lachey November 18, 2010 at 11:21 am

A guy at work gave me this album and I thought for sure I would hate it because he is a corporate hipster and takes himself and and his music way too seriously for my taste. I listened to it, got sleepy and was really bored. But for some reason I kept playing it and I surprisingly found out that the lead singer is female and that I really, really like this album.

Speaking of great (beach themed) work, a video from the Surfer Blood live session was on the page when I clicked on this post. That live session is ridick-town. Much like the Love Language session from last year, I think I like it more than the studio recording.

tim November 18, 2010 at 2:47 pm

You should probably get your hands on their other stuff. Be sure to listen to Devotion first, and then self-titled (so, work backwards). You can see where they are and where they came from.

I just wish they weren’t so impossible to see live.

Pablohoney November 19, 2010 at 7:04 am

Beach House – 2011 Tour Dates

Thu Feb 17, 2011 Los Angeles, CA The Music Box
Fri Feb 18, 2011 San Francisco, CA The Fillmore
Wed Feb 23, 2011 New York, NY Webster Hall
Thu Feb 24, 2011 Philadelphia, PA Trocadero Theatre
Sat Feb 26, 2011 Washington, DC 9:30 Club

Eugenia November 19, 2010 at 2:53 pm

Let me tell you a funny, and 100% real, story.

Back when their “Norway” single came out, about a year ago, iTunes put it up as single of the week, and the various music sites featured it as a free download too. So I downloaded it.

After 1-2 listens, I couldn’t stop laughing at it, feeling that hipsters went a bit too far this time. My beef with the song was that it featured a sound that sounded like “broken keyboards”, like their equipment was faulty. I even took it on Twitter, sarcastically saying that I should donate some money to Beach House to buy new equipment.

Fast forward a few months later, and somehow, after 9-10 listens, I started loving the song! I finally “got it”. And I bought the album too, which since then, it has made my top-5 album list of 2010. And “Norway”, has become the No1 single of the year for me. Not “just one of the best of the year”, but for me, THE best song of the year.

Eugenia November 19, 2010 at 3:29 pm

BTW, I started looking at “hipster music” about 2 years ago. Before that, I was listening to more popular music. It definitely takes time to get used to that kind of new music, there’s no doubt about it. But from the moment you start getting a few of these bands, the rest suck you in easily.

2 years later, I don’t listen to old style music anymore. Musically-speaking I have become a near-hipster (I still dislike Dirty Projectors though and most of Animal Collective, so I can’t call myself a real hipster yet ;-). Point is, the old style music feels old to me now. It feels sterile, it feels like it was made for my grandparents’ world.

The funny thing is, my husband who’s a metal-head, has started getting sucked in to my own music sensibilities too. Think about it: an Iron Maiden fan for 25 years, listening to chillwave. In the beginning he was telling me to change the music in our living room, he found it so darn boring and “unremarkable”, as he said. But I was infusing our daily music rotations little by little with hipster music, and now, he also loves bands like Wild Nothing, and Washed Out.

In conclusion, what I wanted to say here is that it’s all about listening to “new” music enough times until we get it. We usually laugh at “what today’s kids are listening to”, but it’s all about giving it a chance.

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