One of the finest dream pop groups of the 2000s and 2010s, Beach House is the duo of vocalist/keyboardist Victoria LeGrand and guitarist Alex Scally. Over the years, Beach House moved from the charmingly lo-fi sound of early Carpark releases like 2006's self-titled debut to the ethereal perfection of Sub Pop efforts such as 2012's Bloom, but they always focused on hypnotic melodies and LeGrand's velvety voice.
LeGrand and Scally met in Baltimore's indie rock scene and formed Beach House in 2004. They began releasing songs soon after, including "Apple Orchard," which appeared on Pitchfork's Infinite Mixtape MP3 series in August 2006. That October, the duo released their self-titled debut album, which drew comparisons to Nico and Mazzy Star, on Carpark. Early in 2007, Beach House recorded their second album in two months at Lord Baltimore Studio; the results were the fuller-sounding Devotion, which arrived on Carpark in 2008. Following a lengthy tour, Scally and LeGrand worked with producer Chris Coady on their Sub Pop debut Teen Dream. Released in early 2010, the album continued to refine the duo's sound, and debuted in the Top 50 of the Billboard 200.
Beach House built on Teen Dream's success with 2012's Bloom, a unified sound and vision meant to be experienced as an entire album rather than a collection of songs. Working once again with Coady, the duo's fourth album was their most polished yet, earning widespread acclaim and entering the Billboard 200 at number seven. In 2013, Beach House released Forever Still, a short concert film recorded around Tornillo, Texas, where the duo recorded Bloom. Two years later, LeGrand and Scally returned with a pair of albums that featured co-production by Coady and returned to the simplicity of their earlier work. The hushed Depression Cherry arrived in August 2015, while the stripped-down Thank Your Lucky Stars appeared that October. The 2017 compilation B-Sides and Rarities gathered together 14 tracks that included the never-before-released "Chariot" and "Baseball Diamond," as well as the duo's cover of Queen's "Play the Game," which originally appeared on the 2009 Red Hot Organization compilation Dark Was the Night. To make their seventh album, Beach House took a different approach. Working with Sonic Boom and live drummer James Barone, LeGrand, and Scally went into the studio to record songs as soon as they were finished. The results were 2018's aptly named 7, which featured some of the duo's most eclectic music yet. ~ Heather Phares