Beach Fossils: Beach Fossils Review
There gets to be a certain point when you have written enough reviews about the same genre that you start getting tired of referencing the same old talking points, but when a certain style is in vogue, lots of good bands seem come to your attention who play similar music. One of those genres right now is beach driven, hazy pop music. While Beach Fossils fall pretty neatly into the broad categorizations that come with playing this type of music, I can say confidently that their debut, self title album is good enough to help them stand above their peers and make this an album well worth checking out.
Beach Fossils brand of shimmering, reverb heavy pop music is the kind that floats by carelessly, but still seems to somehow stick to your brain. The guitars and vocals are awash in effects, but the music still has an organic sense to it, sounding like a soundtrack to a buzzed out beach party. Sounding like a West Coast version of Real Estate, the band coast through the 11 song, 34 minute album. Beach Fossil is at their best with songs like “Daydream,” which they had previously released as a 7” on Captured Tracks, who also release the album. The vocals sound like they were recorded under water, the guitars are bright and jump all over the track, and the rhythm section seems lost in space (in a good way). The song is equally intimate and distant, bright and claustrophobic. It is hard picking out other particular songs from the album to highlight as it feels like a very cohesive group of songs. Maybe is that is damning it with faint praise and indicative of an album lacking diversity, but that isn’t what I am trying to do.
If you didn’t like chill wave before, this isn’t going to be the album that changes your mind. Beach Fossil is an album that shows a band that, while following a trend, is at least good at what they are doing. The record would work well as a zone out album, sound tracking your next beach party or for serious fans, a trait I think goes to show the strength of the record. This isn’t saying there are not improvements that I would like to see on future records, but Beach Fossils is such an engaging record, I will be happy with what I have right now.