Bloom – Beach House (2012)

bloomVerdict – 8.2

The fourth album, and follow up to the critically acclaimed Teen Dream, for the dream pop duo (Victoria Legrand and Alex Scally) has them sticking to their strengths as they continue to develop their immediately recognizable sound. The result is a very pretty record which rarely dulls and has moments of perfection. The music, which is mesmerising at times, and Legrand’s vocal ability allow the songs to take an ethereal vibe. Legrand also has the ability to convert simple lyrics into transcendent moments, which when backed by that dreamy production, define what makes this duo so unique.

Opener and the album’s best track, “Myth” is a perfectly realized pop song, and one of the best tracks of the year. Relatable in many ways to many people, depicting a form of losing your place or something you care for, hearing Legrand cry the refrain, “Help me to name it”, was a highlight in music 2012. Following that is the excellent, “Wild”, which has the vocals at full flight, with the instrumentation only adding to the blissful feeling before taking off towards a climactic end.

“Other People” is an album highlight, with the vocals on the verses being some of the album’s best. Narrating about the ending and post-happenings of relationships (be it with ex’s, or just old friends) where you just no longer are able to maintain the contact you initially thought would happen naturally, and where we realize we, “never thought it would mean so much”. “New Year” is probably the most instantly likeable and catchy track of Bloom, with its incredibly memorable chorus, this will likely be one of most people’s favourite Beach House songs.  

If you are not a fan of the genre, or were previously unimpressed by the duo, it is unlikely Bloom will change your mind. However, if the emotions and feelings only this music can evoke are what you look towards, this was likely one of your 2012 favourites. No, there aren’t wild spurts of musical creativity and recklessness to make you take notice, but does there need to be? The album flows, without disruptions (for better or worse, you decide), and I feel Bloom is all the more for it. They may not release a ground-breaking effort, but with a sound this well developed, it is hard to imagine the duo releasing a bad album.

Top Songs – “Myth”, “Other People”, “New Year”


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