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Ways We Separate
     

The Ways We Separate

by Beacon
 
Like Junior Boys and the more experimental Telefon Tel Aviv just before them, Beacon have the shape and look of a post-punk synth pop duo like Soft Cell, Associates, and Eurythmics, and are part of

Overview

Like Junior Boys and the more experimental Telefon Tel Aviv just before them, Beacon have the shape and look of a post-punk synth pop duo like Soft Cell, Associates, and Eurythmics, and are part of that lineage while unmistakably inspired by contemporary R&B. The first EP from Brooklyn dwellers Thomas Mullarney III and Jacob Gossett, released in 2011 on the Ghostly International-affiliated Moodgadget label, even sampled a certain hit R&B single from 1997. With a 2012 EP on Ghostly proper also in the distance, they take a few steps forward with their first album, a subtle and richly detailed set of ballads that ache in a way that is seductive rather than despondent. Mullarney's vocals, hushed but expressive, are heart-on-sleeve in nature with a hint of devilishness. His lyrics take some unexpected turns, as on "Overseer," where the opening verse is made of heated slow jam material until a sour finish: "Isn't it fine taking it slow, watching you watch me…walk out the door." Romantic division is a constant theme of the album. On the title-quoting "Between the Waves," Mullarney seems conflicted between grasp and release over a tense, slip-and-slide combination of thrumming bass, swelling synthesizer textures, and ringing guitar accents. Cunningly sequenced, The Ways We Separate is exceptionally fluid and tightly bound, made for compulsive listening with no weak links. Few albums end with a song that encapsulates the whole thing. "Split in Two" does just that, with Mullarney coming to terms with his emotional trauma: "What'd I do for you?/Split myself in half/Divided into two."

Product Details

Release Date:
04/30/2013
Label:
Ghostly Int'l
UPC:
0804297818023
catalogNumber:
180
Rank:
111160

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