Beach Fossils – Somersault
In 2013’s Clash the Truth the Brooklyn band played with punk and New Wave influences. The result was more impressive than their self-titled debut, which was pleasant but unexciting, the sort of music you put on when packing your lunch to bring to work tomorrow. Somersault takes a bolder leap forward, taking tropes and palettes from 60s pop, grunge, and even country, and making bold play with strings and horns, piano and harpsichord, surprising effects, freer guitar and more assertive bass.
This Year – the opener and first single – is very catchy, showing off some of their newfound range, most notably in the string arrangements that come to define the album. They’ll range much further: through lovely songs that incorporate spicy flute, Harrison-esque guitar riffs and solos, and even a spoken word breakdown from Cities Aviv (though this is not all that impressive).
Their subjects throughout the album are passing time, regrets, resolutions, and the regrets that beget resolutions that mature into new and familiar regrets. Within this album-space we are perpetually “too late,” but the music refuses to let this knowledge stop or even slow us. Many of the songs seem to soar – self-awareness at cruising altitude – but there’s also a groundedness to the album, a sense that at least one member’s classic Adidas are never too far from the Brooklyn pavements – in no small part because of an understated but pervasive politicality. This is the band’s best yet.
Listen to: This Year, Saint Ivy, Down the Line