beabadoobee – Fake It Flowers, Album Review

On the lead single “Care,” beabadoobee asks that whoever is in her crosshairs stop saying that they give a shit because they don’t really care. Well, it took all of three short years for us to care. From bedroom pop to garage rock, British singer-songwriter beabadoobee (b. Beatrice Laus) has built her sound from the roof on down. The bedroom pop of her first single “Coffee” (Sampled by Canadian rapper Powfu for the viral single “Death Bed” earlier this year”) laid the foundation for the garage-esque energy that breathes life into her debut album, Fake It Flowers.

Much of the Indie/Alternative musical landscape of the last few years has taken on the shape and color of 80s revivalist production: from the swirling guitars and pre-New Jack Swing drumbeats of more R&B-style projects, to the DIY mentality of the modern musician, all of which I can groove to. Fake It Flowers, however, pulls powerful inspiration from a few years farther into the future. From the opening track, “Care,” on through to the album closer “Yoshimi, Forest, Magdalene,” this LP unfolds like a love letter to the early 90s Alternative Rock scene. A cut like “Yoshimi, Forest, Magdalene” would’ve sat well on an angst teen mixtape beside a track like Nirvana’s “Endless, Nameless”. “Further Away,” a track penned by Beatrice in the vein of finally accepting self by understanding that there is no stability in any other form of acceptance, is lush in its sound and could’ve lived a life on any of the Cranberries’ first two LPs.

Was she here to have experienced any of the aforementioned 90s artists at the peak of their powers? No. Has it held her back from creating the modern day answer to those artists’ statements? Again, no. Quiet verses and loud choruses ebb and flow throughout.

Credit – beabadoobee

“Charlie Brown,” my personal favorite cut from the record, speaks to self-harm and Beatrice’s experience with that state of mind. The last blast chorus at the tail-end was the perfect note to end on. Two voices: one in loud sing and one in stoic talk, both telling you to “throw it away”. The object being used to self-harm or the thoughts and feelings that inspire one to harm oneself? An abrupt end to a gut-punch of a track, but the perfect segue into the next. “Emo Song” carries the weight of “Charlie Brown,” albeit over a different shoulder. “Nobody knows when I was young / I lost myself in cosmic dust,” another ode to escapism and the many outfits we can dress it in.

“Sorry” and “How Was Your Day?” will resonate strongly with those who enjoy the 90s alternative sound for its melancholic strands. The strings that comprise the background of “Sorry” will bring to mind a “Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness” deep cut of the Smashing Pumpkins’ catalog; “How Was Your Day?” could’ve been recorded in your bathroom and doesn’t short you on any of that level of intimacy either.

To go along with Fake It Flowers, beabadoobee and her band released footage of a live performance of the LP in its entirety on YouTube. Not only is it worth the watch, it will add even more context to just how raw, yet inviting Fake It Flowers is as a complete piece. We couldn’t have gotten much closer to the vest than we did with this album, and I can’t wait to see where beabadoobee goes next with her output.

beabadoobee – Fake It Flowers, Album Review
Turning away from the bedroom pop of her earliest EPs, beabadoobee's debut is a great start and a bright projection of her present and future star, as well as a sweet salute to the most iconic decade in alternative rock music.
Production
9.1
Songwriting
8.9
Vocal Performance
8.5
+
Lush Production
Stellar Vocals
Introspective Songwriting
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N/A
8.8
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