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The thing about Beach House is that you know what you are getting. You know styles won’t strain, and that is the beauty of the dream-pop duo’s fourth album, Bloom. Sure, it is more polished than their debut LP, but it’s ripe with the trademark sound of romantic organs, Alex Scally’s innovative guitar riffs, and Victoria Legrand’s ethereal voice. Aptly named, Bloom is a meticulously produced blossom that can take home the big blue ribbon.

A blanket of eeriness covers opening track “Myth.” The Beach House aesthetic rolls deep here, as a slow daze creeps in, escalating to an awakening mid-song and then back down to a controlled dream beat that is made for montages of heartbreak.

Legrand’s androgynous voice is used to its full potential in “Lazuli,” as she howls like a wolf bellowing under a full moon to stop you dead in your tracks. Legrand is like a female Bowie, able to use her voice as a seduction to the tempo. The panting of her breath acts as the chorus. It cuts into the Atari-like organ intro and is a perfect example of how mesmerizing she can be.

On closing track “Irene,” the hazy synth build-up to the lyrics — “It’s a strange paradise...” — makes you wonder the possibilities of what is to come. Is it the end or the future?

  • Album: Bloom
  • Artist: Beach House
  • Label: Sub Pop
  • Songs: (1) Myth (2) Wild (3) Lazuli (4) Other People (5) The Hours (6) Troublemaker (7) New Year (8) Wishes (9) On the Sea (10) Irene
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