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Email: neo@neoloop.com
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Jul 23rd, 2011 01:30am
 Beirut: Santa Fe

The first feel good hit of the summer!

From Zach Condon's Beirut project. A Rip Tide is due out at the end of August and is some of Beirut’s first new songs since the EP March Of The Zapotec. Their second LP A Flying Club Cup is now a firm all-time favourite, so any new material from Zach Condon is very exciting! Recorded last winter in New York Beirut have come a long way since the debut The Gulag Orkestar LP and Lon Gisland EP. But somehow Condon has always retained a certain unique sound that comes from his rotary valve flugelhorn and ukulele.

All the hallmarks of the Beirut sound are here, the Balkan brass, French accordions and Mexican influences but overall this is much more poppy affair, this is good news as Condon certainly knows how to write a compelling riff and a catchy chorus. Listening to this album just makes me smile, it's uplifting and transcends you off into a happy place.

The mellow A Candle's Fire starts off this short LP (just over 33 minutes) in style, the instruments build throughout and creates that full and satisfying sound we've come to expect. We are then treated to the album's first epic moment in Santa Fe, Condon's home town, a hypnotic synth loop captivates you from the start, listen to it here. Next up is the first single release East Harlem, a gentle accordion intro is snapped up into a choppy acoustic rhythm with lush flourishes of brass horns, just superb. We take in some more somber moments with Goshen and Payne's Bay. The title track The Rip Tide is another bona fide winner, at the centre of the album it holds it all together, Codon's voice is spot on. Vagabond sounds like a left over track from Yann Tiersen's soundtrack to Le Fabuleux Destin d'Amélie Poulain with Condon adding his unique twist. Just beautiful. The record finishes with the stripped back The Peacock and Port of Call a marching band beat and a mandolin riff. What emerges is a style that belongs uniquely and distinctly to Beirut, one that has actually been there all along.

Condon has formed his own label Pompeii Records, the singer will now take direct control of the release and distribution of his music. Beirut will be touring the UK in September with a night at Briton Academy on the 16th. A Rip Tide is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.

Official Site

Categories: Acoustic, Alternative, Folk
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