Thursday, December 7, 2023
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Beach Fossils – Bunny Review

Having never been to a beach and never seen a bunny, Beach Fossils are charting a course through unseen territories for some listeners. Bunny, their latest album and a firm contender for their best, sees their jangle pop style come to a head with drifting chords, easily accessed tracks and a wonderful perspective on easy-going art. Take a load off and lie back, listen to Sleeping On My Own, realise the heartbreak and launch back upright. It is not the dreamy little indie pop numbers you first expected, the emotional chains are yanked and hauled over by Beach Fossils. They do not provide this safe little place to relax in their work but are in fact as sincere as they are pronounced about grief and romantic rage. Bunny gets to the bottom of it all. Someone has to. 

Mellow disarmaments break through to give listeners the emotional runaround. Run To The Moon ditches the opening surfs for a soft psychedelic charm. What remains the same and thankfully, consistently, are lyrical placements, the imagery Dustin Payseur can bring to a listener. Bunny appears ready to accept their listeners but never gives them the answers. Good. Figure it out yourself, but listen to an excellent indie album when doing so. Fight your own battles. Don’t Fade Away figures this out nicely. Dare Me is the conclusion to self-revival. Everyone needs to head through the motions to find themselves again. It’s a wonderful feeling to do it, and Beach Fossils soundtracks some reflection with a mature tenderness. 

Knowing your own value comes through an endless, countless variety of projects across the mediums but it is Beach Fossils which brings about the clearest call to arms and potential for change. It is all tough love after all. Tough Love shows it in more than just the title. Even in the anxieties which flow through those tracks of forgotten or lost love comes confidence from Beach Fossils which showcase their wonderful sound. Anton Hochheim deserves plenty of credit for providing a steady rhythm, as does Jack Doyle Smith with his somewhat Smiths-influenced style of play complimenting the core of Beach Fossils nicely. Firing away with consistencies in their head and quality in their heart, Bunny begins to take shape as Seconds rattles through. A calm but an equally considered and well-maintained set of songs come right for the heart, shatter it, and mend the pieces back together. 

Is it enough of a change in tone for the seasoned listeners? Who knows. Probably not. Bunny is a consistent little beast which hits on the tone the band is now enjoying playing around with. Beach Fossils may find their style in similar transitions and hooks to their earlier works but it is the heart and considered lyrics which stand out and make the crucial difference. Retreading the same steps is all well and good if something new crops up, to say and to warn of. Bunny has an abundance of this new message, a real and complex setlist of fears and warm reassurances for listeners battling their darkest worries. Enough to get by, nothing perfect, but nothing needing to be skipped over either. Numb and Waterfall makes for a nice conclusion, a slower and intimate duo which brings through those feelings of emotionless shock and the rapid flurry. Get back up and keep on pushing, that is what Beach Fossils hope their listeners take from this.  

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Ewan Gleadow
Ewan Gleadow
Editor in Chief at Cult Following | News and culture journalist at Clapper, Daily Star, NewcastleWorld, Daily Mirror | Podcast host of (Don't) Listen to This | Disaster magnet

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