Very much in the tradition of their first three albums, Beach House has created another lush, evocative, classic-sounding record. Ethereal vocals are bathed in dense, shimmering, swelling, synth-driven orchestrations and languid rhythms.
Since the band hews throughout the album to a single, relatively consistent tempo and texture, inattentive listeners may write it off as tedious or soporific. But I see "Bloom" as a fruition and a blossoming of the band's unique, carefully crafted sound. Both beautiful and subtle, simultaneously simple and complex, this a record with a great deal of depth.
I could write about individual songs, but I can't describe them in a way that would meaningfully differentiate them. There are many high points, especially on the first few mesmerizing tracks and on the long closer (which contains a hidden bonus song after five minutes of silence), yet there are no singles to speak of. The entire album is an organic whole, a unitary work of art meant for dreaming, swaying, lazing, and musing. It's pop music, but it's not for everyone, and it doesn't try to be.
If you're in the right frame of mind, the warm, wistful, melodic, atmospheric music on "Bloom" sets a magical mood. It will be playing at many a beach house and on many a beach this summer.
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