Beach House, Wume | The Vic | Rock, Pop, Etc | Chicago Reader
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Beach House

Shawn Brackbill

When: Tue., March 1, 8 p.m. 2016
Price: sold out
There’s no band today like Beach House. Alex Scally and Victoria Legrand are the rare musicians who’ve evolved past their primary influences to remarkably and consistently explore a sound they’ve perfected. Dream pop is their starting point, but the journey through their six-album discography reveals a soaring tenderness that is pained and rapturous—reminiscent of the kind of love that feels like a gust of frigid air one moment, and a gentle crackling fire the next. Legrand’s voice is as cloudy as her words, as though she’s remembering rosy memories from several lifetimes ago. When caught up in the anthemic swirls of songs like “On the Sea” or “Levitation,” it’s easy to forget that their music is composed with just a guitar, keyboard, and drum machine. Their two full-length releases for Sub Pop in 2015, Depression Cherry and Thank Your Lucky Stars, are distinct entities, though the latter’s release came as a surprise. Scally and Legrand have added two members to their touring lineup to make a big sound bigger, but they’re equally adept at paring down a song to its most yearning parts—and some of their new material allows Legrand to step away from her keyboard for the first time. During “All Your Yeahs,” for example, she plucks at a bass while her voice floats airily over quiet moments. And like their music, the minimal set production—which includes a dazzling light display during a showpiece like “10 Mile Stereo” from Teen Dream—gives us exactly what we need and nothing more. Beach House pull on our heartstrings, cradling us along the way.

Beach House will also play as a two-piece on Wednesday, March 2, at a venue to be announced. This show is part of what the band is calling an "installation" series, taking place in galleries, art spaces, community centers, and other alternative venues; the duo will perform without a stage, and the audience (capped at 200) will be asked to sit on the floor. Tickets will be much more expensive than a typical Beach House show, due to high production costs and the limited number of attendees; they go on sale Friday, February 26, at 11 AM.

— Meagan Fredette
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