The title of Beach House’s fifth album has the potential to set alarm bells ringing: is this a band in transition from being dreampop’s modern-day standard bearers to unwitting self-parodists? It turns out not. Depression Cherry may proudly adhere to every fuzzy touchstone of the genre, but it’s also a record on which every subtle chord shift and breathy sigh feels considered. It lacks the bigger pop moments of their last two albums, Bloom and Teen Dream, yet by paring down the drums and allowing themselves to play more quietly, the Baltimore duo somehow increase their impressive ability to sound like they’re whispering each song directly into your eardrum. In this context, even the slightest sonic effects – be they the distorted guitar notes that swandive through the opening of Beyond Love, or the 8-bit keyboard riff in Space Song – gain resonance. It’s more of the same, but different.
Beach House: Depression Cherry review – the same dreampop, but different