Beach Fossils

Rock y Pop

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Beach Fossils in Concert

Alongside bands like Real Estate, The Drums, and Wild Nothing, Brooklyn’s Beach Fossils were instrumental in defining the sound of late-2000s American indie-pop — a style that paradoxically felt intimate and insular to a certain time and place, yet could also transport you to the white-sand coasts of your most fantastical soft-focus dreams. At the onset, Beach Fossils existed primarily as the solo project of Dustin Payseur, who recruited a revolving cast of friends (including future DIIV frontman Zachary Cole Smith) to help him realize his modest grayscale vision. Using the spindly guitar melodies of early New Order as its foundation, Beach Fossils’ proudly lo-fi 2010 self-titled debut was a master class in rainy-Sunday-morning indie, with Payseur casually pining for vacations and lazy days in ghostly, reverb-rich vocals that sounded like they were emanating from an old Radio Shack hi-fi. But as his lineup began to solidify, so too did his sound: 2013’s ‘Clash the Truth’ boasted greater sonic and lyrical clarity (yielding the gorgeous acoustic dream-pop of “Sleep Apnea”), while flexing a more finely chiseled post-punk muscle that brought a nervy energy to songs like the cutting cultural critique “Generational Synthetic.” (That enhanced rhythmic vigor may also explain how this nominally chill band wound up playing bratty fictional garage-punk band The Nasty Bits on HBO’s short-lived ‘70s music-biz drama ‘Vinyl.’) Following a four-year absence, Beach Fossils resurfaced with bolder, more grandiose pop ambitions on 2017’s ‘Somersault,’ splitting the difference between new-wave austerity and sun-kissed hippy-dippy harmonies on the propulsive “Down the Line,” while summoning shoegaze hero Rachel Goswell of Slowdive to provide guest vocals for the luminous jangly psychedelia of “Tangerine.” The 2018 single “Agony” revealed yet another new look for this ever-evolving band, with Payseur casting his increasingly forthright croon in a slow-motion ballad swaddled in ‘80s soft-rock synth textures, minimalist drum-machine beats, and cascading guitar ripples.