ACL Music Fest Friday Interview

Proving the suede-to-silk theory

ACL Music Fest Friday Interview

Beach House

5pm, Honda stage

At a sold-out Emo's show in April, Baltimore's Beach House proved evolution in action. More specifically, it was keyboardist Victoria Legrand, whipping her gold dust mane around center stage, that proved my suede-to-silk theory. The singer tried to explain the sea change.

"Constantly my eyes and ears are opening to things," she says. "Inspiration can be anything. Beach House is a constant process – we live, breathe, eat Beach House. I want to use everything around me."

Earlier this year, Legrand and guitarist Alex Scally released their third disc, Teen Dream. Gone were the lovesick dreams of their 2006 debut and 2008's Devotion. "Silver Soul" and "Norway" anchored the duo to a fuller sound, one that grew organically from constant touring and redirecting ideas. To document this, they had different artists make videos for each song on the album.

"It was another challenge," Legrand explains. "You know, people who hear the self-titled [album] are like: 'Okay, I don't wear flowery dresses. I don't float around on the wind. I'm not serious all the time.' The videos were a way of showing that. We gave [each filmmaker] complete freedom, and these videos showed how people viewed our songs. They're sort of tiny curations."

Most notably on Teen Dream, Legrand's voice has matured. She eschews any sort of previous vocal training, pointing out that training doesn't make art.

"My singing is what I do; it's my identity," she says. "Singers, whether opera or whatever, you know – women change. Women's voices can change. So I allow my voice to do whatever it wants."

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More Beach House
Phases & Stages
Beach House and Beachwood Sparks
Bloom, The Tarnished Gold (Record Review)

Raoul Hernandez, July 20, 2012

Phases & Stages
Beach House
Teen Dream (Record Review)

Audra Schroeder, Feb. 5, 2010

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