Listening to Beaches, it is natural to let your mind wander. Their overwhelming fuzz is calming, as if opening your awareness to things unseen. That may sound similar to the effects of a mind-altering drug, but it is more enriching as pure, unadulterated rock and roll. Take a dive into the band’s latest double LP, Second of Spring; it is a creation of pulsing reverb and driving guitars, ranging in attitude from shoegaze to psych rock, and it rings in yours ears later on, like a phantom wishing to be replayed.
This record is more expansive than this puny review can muster. It has unexpected creativity, not only toward the end of the album but at the start as well. The first few songs teeter on the edge of metal, revving up as if they are about to break into a Black Sabbath ballad, but the music strains quietly to prevent that from happening. That doesn’t mean that you can’t thrash around as you listen, creating a one-man mosh pit, as I am wont to do. On the other side of the record, the melodies become more pronounced like in “Bronze Age Babies,” a carnival of whimsy, and in “Grey Colours,” which is a spectrum of lofi noise all its own. The final drone of “Mutual Delusion” is too intrusive not to be subliminal, perhaps if only to tell us that everything preceding it was prologue. To say Second of Spring will get into your head is an understatement; it lives under your skin.