Beach House is best described as a dream. Hailing from Baltimore, Maryland, Alex Scally and Victoria Legrand form this indie duo. Since their first self-titled album in 2006, Beach House has become an obscure gem among the indie-rock scene, often likened to the sounds of My Bloody Valentine and Grizzly Bear, among others.
Beach House’s newest release, Depression Cherry, stays true to their ethereal style. You begin the album, and the notion of time seems to fade; before you know it, you’re sitting in a dark room, and the afternoon has turned into night. How appropriate that the album should embody the nighttime, but not at all depressing like the title implies. The tracks are dreamy and sensual. 80’s synthetic overlays give the album a dark-techno sound, but the album is not eerie. In fact, it is very sublime and relaxing with its languid melodies.
The album opens with “Levitation,” a dramatic first track with 80’s synthesizer tones and Legrand’s lofty vocals. A soft tambourine transitions to a rhythmic beat and subtle rock guitar riffs. “Sparks” follows with a raw guitar opening accompanied with a techno backdrop, giving the track an industrial style, softened by airy vocals. “Space Song” takes on a different sound with a surfer vibe, while “PPP,” one of the more popular tracks, takes on the style of a love song, reflecting a 50’s melody.
The album seems to be a combination of love songs and lullabies, all of which are enrapturing and comforting in their gentle vocals. Although the band name might imply a sound best suited for the west coast, Beach House captivates their listeners by taking the indie genre, which is normally associated to sounds similar to punk and rock, and combines it with a sound less harsh than the industrial genre and an 80’s techno style to create complex and beautiful melodies.
Nikki grew up in an imitation German town in Georgia by the name of Helen. It wasn’t until middle school that she started to get interested in the arts: painting, music, and writing. She wrote in her diary, sketched in art class and listened to regretful music. By high school, her tastes became a little more refined. She found Fiona Apple, Lou Reed and Giant Drag, and they remain her favorites in college. She was accepted to the University of Georgia in 2012 and is currently majoring in English. Upon moving to Athens from a town with more trees than people, Nikki was a bit overwhelmed. However, there is certainly no lack of inspiration in Athens, and she appreciates its love for the arts and its service as a platform.