If you’re a Two Door Cinema Club fan then no doubt you’ve been impatiently waiting the release of their new album, Beacon. If you’re not a fan, just a good music lover, this album may have also been on your radar.
Part of the reason for Beacon’s anticipation is due to the success of TDCC’s first album, Tourist History. The band’s debut took indie rock music by surprise and catapulted them to the forefront of the genre. Will the difficult second album live up to expectations?
Will Beacon be better than Tourist History, or at least as good as it?
Beacon’s first track, “Next Year” doesn’t start with the optimism and youthful exuberance that Tourist History’s “Cigarettes in the Theatre” had. This whole album lacks that feeling of arrogantly screaming to the world “We’ve made it!” This album instead seems to confidently insist, “We’re still here!” Beacon feels more progressive than Tourist History, definitely more emotional. The lyrics speak louder.
The first true high point on this album comes in “Someday.” Expect to hear this on a dance floor near you! This is Two Door Cinema Club at their best, sharp arrangement, good drum beat, awesome guitars, the bass line gives this track a real night time vibe (think Blink 182’s Neighborhoods), upbeat from start to finish, the track never feels like it’s dragging itself out. “Someday” has more than enough clout to match Tourist History’s standout track; “Something Good Can Work”.
Upbeat nighttime vibes don’t sum this album up though, as TDCC also give us beauty and serenity with, “The world is watching (with Valentina)” and “Settle.” These two tracks bring Beacon into a state of summer evening reflection, which is very soothing! This makes sense considering that Alex Trimble sounds like he’s channeling Ben Gibbard from Death Cab at times, so much so that the title track wouldn’t sound out of place on Death Cab’s Narrow Stairs album.
From start to finish, Beacon has a beating heart, something that was vacant from Tourist History, but is Beacon as good as or better than Tourist History?
They’re actually too different to compare, which in itself surprised me. It surprised me because I didn’t think Two Door Cinema Club were capable of experimenting so quickly. I expected Tourist History part two because I thought that was all TDCC were capable of, I was very wrong and extremely happy about it! Alex Trimble says it best on “Pyramid” when he sings, “We’ve seen the world for what it’s worth,” and suddenly I understood why the youthful exuberance from tourist history has been replaced with Beacon’s wisdom. TDCC have been on tour for the past two years, as a result it sounds like they’ve grown up a bit, out with arrogance and in with perspective.
Death Cab for Cutie’s best album is Plans, considering it took them five albums to achieve what they did on Plans. Two Door Cinema Club should be highly optimistic about the future of their band! This is only TDCC’s second album and they’ve already taken tremendous strides and acquired a good helping of depth, soul and experience!
Overall, I would give Beacon three and a half out of five, exactly what I would have given Tourist History but for completely different reasons. Beacon proves to me that TDCC are going to be around for a long time, because they’re not afraid to experiment, which in today’s music industry means a lot!
I’d say buy this and you wont regret it, especially if you’re a Death Cab fan!
Best tracks; “Wake up,” “Sun,” “Someday,” “The world is watching (with Valentina),” “Settle,” and “Spring.”