The mood was dreamy, hazy, and romantic at Beach House’s sold-out show at Vancouver’s Commodore Ballroom on October 1. When the Baltimore-based band first appeared on stage, only a shadowy outline of members Victoria Legrand and Alex Scally with drummer Dan Franz could be seen through a cloud of smoke. Opening with the synth-soaked “Wild” off this year’s release, Bloom, Legrand’s husky contralto vocals filled the room as she cooed the lyrics “A little wine/ You stole a smile/ The Earth is wild/ You’ve got no time”. Beach House followed that song by delivering a studio-quality rendition of “Walk in the Park” off 2010’s Teen Dream, before continuing right into the galloping “Troublemaker”.
By the time they were ready to perform fan favourite “Norway”, which elicited some of the night’s loudest cheers, most of the couples in the audience were wrapped in each other’s embrace, rocking back and forth to the gentle lull of dream pop. Even singletons in the crowd could not help but feel a sense of calmness and gentleness during lullaby “Used to Be”
Newer songs “Other People” and “Lazuli” were both performed almost identical to the way they’re heard on the record, with the latter being enhanced by timed flashing lights. Meanwhile, the soft sashay of “New Year” momentarily picked up the energy in the room.
Highlights of the night were definitely “Zebra” and “Wishes”, which came one right after the other near the end of the hour-and-half-long set. Legrand’s howling vocals had a hypnotic effect over the crowd, which sang along during the choruses. While Beach House certainly wasn’t the most exciting band to watch—with almost no speaking during their entire time on stage—the sound of their songs never wavered, and the crowd of 20- and 30-somethings seemed to enjoy every moment.