Beach House - Devotion
Beach House is the musical duo of instrumentalist Alex Scally and vocalist/keyboardist Victoria Legrand. And as their namesake suggests, their music resonates with the kind of languid radiance of a spiritual retreat from the modern world.
Building their signature sound from a few spare elements, lo-fi organs, harpsichords, and vintage drum machines, the pair crafts an exquisitely detailed atmosphere from minimal instrumentation. Legrand's hypnotic croon sits pleasingly against Scally's twanging pedal steel lines, suggesting a country-tinged Nico. On "Turtle Island," the dirge-like drone of a harmonium offers a hauntingly baroque accompaniment to Legrand's tale of heartbreak. But somber and downcast is not the only mood on offer: "Some Things Last (A Long Time)" is their version of a Daniel Johnston chestnut, while "D.A.R.L.I.N.G." offers their otherworldly take on `60s girl-group pop.
"I think the secret to the band's unavoidable charm is that they're subtle in their advances; the melodies and buoyant harmonies creep up on you slowly and without warning - the echoing guitars of 'You Came to Me' only really making a mark once you've left the album far behind you, and the washed-out lyrics of 'Gila' appearing again maybe in a night of restless sleep." - Boomkat
"Crisper, brighter, bolder songs that retain the Baltimore dream-pop duo's melodic sense and vibe of elegant decay." - Pitchfork
"Devotion is the sound of balmy summer nights and sticky days, the settling down and taking account after a long exertion." - Stereogum