February 14th may be reserved for those in love, but for many others, Valentines Day was equally memorable this year, thanks to the surprise return of Baltimore’s finest: Beach House. “Wishing everyone out there love tonight” they posted, alongside the link to ‘Lemon Glow’ – their first new music since ‘Chariot’ and ‘Baseball Diamond’ were released last June as part of their ‘B-Sides and Rarities’ compilation. This album was very much a consolidation of everything else Beach House had achieved, aside from their six studio albums; the final piece of the puzzle in solidifying their proud discography. Therefore, it came as a great surprise when we were greeted with the next chapter of Beach House less than a year after its release.
‘Lemon Glow’ is the first single to come from Beach House’s as-yet untitled seventh studio album, due this spring. As their third studio album in three years, and their fourth release during this period if you include ‘B-Sides and Rarities’, you can only wonder how Beach House continue to bombard us with fresh releases without ever growing tired or waning in ideas. Their answer, as well as enduring devotion, is a winning formula which allows any new music to explore new realms of their indefinite genre, all without compromising the fundamental sound which they are adored for. This is exactly the case with ‘Lemon Glow’.
Admittedly, Beach House have maintained some of the characteristics which have made previous efforts so memorable, including their fixation towards potential shades of Dulux paint (with the duo previously adopting titles for singles/albums such as ‘Silver Soul’ and ‘Depression Cherry’). The pitch-bend-laden synth riff bears a slight resemblance to the opening riff in ‘Walk in the Park’ from their classic 2010 album ‘Teen Dream’, while the striking drum machine beats which appear towards the end of the track reminisce similar beats which are heard on various tracks from 2015’s ‘Depression Cherry’. Yet these comparisons are also what make ‘Lemon Glow’ such a treat for fans of the Baltimore duo.
By paying homage to both the dazzling melodies of ‘Teen Dream’, and the more abrasive harmonies which we saw glimpses of from tracks such as ‘Sparks’ and ‘One Thing’ (from 2015’s ‘Depression Cherry’ and ‘Thank Your Lucky Stars’ respectively), Beach House are able to unite fans from both their critical prime at the beginning of the decade, and those who fell in love with them through more recent releases. Therefore, while ‘Lemon Glow’ may not be the dramatic departure in sound which some critics will crave, it is still more than enough to satisfy the community of fans who Beach House have managed to garner over the past 14 years.
Ultimately, with the help of Victoria Legrand’s mesmerizing yet daunting lyrics, such as: “See this state I’m in/Is crawling in my skin/Fevers took me back/And turned me inside out,” coupled with inputs from guitarist Alex Scally, which gradually elevate the song into darker, and heavy territories as the song progresses, ‘Lemon Glow’ rewards fans of Beach House with everything they could want from a comeback single, while showing exciting glimpses of what else we can expect from album number seven.
Roll on the Spring!