There is little denying that Baltimore’s Beach House have unexpectedly turned into one of the year’s most unexpected success stories – from being hardly known in January they have risen to become critically praised broadsheet darlings by year end. This transition has seen the central pairing of Victoria Legrand and Alex Scally unexpectedly caught by surprise, and tonight they are almost embarrassingly thankful towards the audience for attending this performance, which largely takes from their third album ‘Teen Dream’ – an album that has connected unlike any of their previous and now comfortably rests in amongst the higher echelons of many of this years best album lists.
Transposed to a live environment, elegant dream pop songs such as ‘Norway’ and ‘Zebra’ do not loose any of their immediate tenderness, the understated performance, which sees them accompanied onstage by a trio of colour changing triangular shapes, is perfectly refrained and compliments their shoe-gaze inspired melodies. On one hand, tonight’s performance is lacklustre, void of real presence and blatant onstage charisma. On the other Beach House have no need to be full blown. Sometimes it’s better to take the foot off the pedal and let the songs glide by in a controlled, delicate manner. Tonight is one of those times.
By Nathan Westley
Originally published in issue 24 (vol 3) of Loud And Quiet. December 2010