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The Rip Tide

37 customer reviews

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Vinyl, August 30, 2011
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Editorial Reviews

Vinyl LP pressing 2011 album from the lovingly-adored Indie Rock/Pop band led by Zach Condon. Beirut's music often parallels the exotic mysteries of world travel. Since Beirut's last album, 2007's the Flying Club Cup, sang a love-letter to France (with a 2009 stop-off in Mexico for the March of the Zapotec EP), many asked where his songs would voyage next, but few predicted the inward journey Condon takes on the Rip Tide, an album with the most introspective and memorable songs of his young career. Recorded in Upstate New York, Brooklyn and, of course, Condon's hometowns of Albuquerque and Santa Fe, the Rip Tide marks a distinct leaping-off point for Beirut.

1. A Candle's Fire
2. Santa Fe
3. East Harlem
4. Goshen
5. Payne's Bay
6. The Rip Tide
7. Vagabond
8. The Peacock
9. Port of Call

Product Details

  • Vinyl (August 30, 2011)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Pompeii Records
  • ASIN: B0059IVVZ6
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (37 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #74,699 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

32 of 34 people found the following review helpful By aurevoiryouth on September 26, 2011
Format: MP3 Music Verified Purchase
Finally, after confusing people with the March of the Zapotec double EP, Beirut has released their third, concrete album. The Rip Tide is decidedly in the same vein as the previous two LPs, and that is what's wonderful about it. After experimenting with French and Latin influences, Zach Condon has taken further Balkan cues from his debut, Gulag Orkestar.

Gulag is the strongest album Condon has recorded; however, Rip Tide matches the quality of Flying Club Cup (#2). Once more, listeners feel as though they're on a hundred-year-old train, traveling to some long-forgotten old town. There are more upbeat songs here compared to previous tracks, particularly on 'Santa Fe', 'East Harlem', and 'Vagabond'. There is also a wonderful throwback in 'Payne's Bay' to Condon's first recording on an EP entitled The Joys of Losing Weight.

Although some have disregarded this track, a highlight of the album is 'The Peacock'. It carries that familiar, melancholic tune that Condon has conjured up on tracks like 'Postcards from Italy' and 'On A Bayonet'. It is buried at the end of the LP, and has consequently become my favorite track of mid-2011.

On an anecdotal side note that the Amazon universe seems to love: I just saw these guys perform tonight. They are, honestly, a great band. They are shockingly good at getting to the heart of nostalgic, melancholic music. Get Gulag, get this, get everything in between and you will, most likely, feel 100x more human than your office cubicle lets you.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Bonnie Billy on August 31, 2011
Format: Vinyl
Beirut's The Rip Tide is a wonderful album. The songs flow nicely, the lyrics are accompanied by wonderful melodies. Some may complain about the length of the album relative to Beirut's previous albums, but it seems they were focused on releasing and album full of equally great songs, there are no fillers here.

As for the vinyl packaging, it is the best I've seen all year. It is simple, yet fantastic. The record's outer sleeve is thick and sturdy, it is reminiscent of my old, high-fidelity classical records. It is also bound in cloth, adding to the quality of the sleeve. The inner sleeve is a thick, and of high quality plastic. This is one of the few records I opened and put directly on my turntable without having to thoroughly clean. A few specks of dust here and there, but I'm not complaining.

The physical and musical quality of this release is magnificent. One of the better albums of the year, and one of the highest quality packaging I've seen in a while.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By B. Martin on September 13, 2011
Format: Audio CD
There is no mistaking the joyous, percolating melodies of Beruit. The band's songs (primarily the creations of Zach Condon) have been described as pop music with a worldly feel since the songs often feature the sounds of other countries and cultures. But Condon isn't just showing off his vast array of influences and tastes. Instead he is marrying them to decidedly American musical genres such as indie-rock to create something unique and meaningful: music that is vibrant and catchy and succeeds in taking you around the world even though you might not be aware it's happening.

The group's latest offering is a tightly focused collection of wide-eyed pop that shows major growth from 2007's "The Flying Club Cup". Songs such as "Santa Fe" and "East Harlem" burst with melodic richness and a sense of joy and wonder that can only be conveyed by the best pop music. Yet there is more than just ear candy on display here. Condon's lyrics display an insightfulness that belies his young age and repeated listens reveal new shadings to the compositions collected here. This is music for the head, the heart and the ears.

Granted, I wish the album had been stretched out just a little bit further. But I would rather have too little of a very good thing than too much of mere mediocrity. Condon is well aware of this and wisely leaves listeners wanting more. If "The Riptide" is any indication, there will be plenty more to come.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Frank Camm on November 7, 2011
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
The settings feel synthesized from modular instrumental parts in a rickety way that is endearing, each a little different. Think a village or Salvation Army band playing the arrangements of a quirky experimenter. Some settings are quite complex and intricate, unfolding carefully through a song. Vocals are uniformly warm, mellow, and welcoming. Tim Buckley meets Rufus Wainwright. The lead singer sounds old-fashioned, crooning in tawny tones, but always with a cool edge that keeps us in the 2010s. Tension builds among the rickety settings, warm vocals, and power pop temper of the whole undertaking. Fun, quietly content in a warm, comfortable way that is always a bit askew. Haven't chosen favorites yet; all tracks are strong.

1. A candle's fire. Lonely, quiet field organ, then full brass fanfare. Steady, sturdy, earnest mid-tempo pop. Warm lead male vocal practically glows a low, tawny gold. Each bit stands carefully apart, but each is clearly part of an intricate design--will it hold together or stumble into a pile? Fun watching.
2. Santa Fe. Perky power pop straight from c. 1980. Up-tempo pepperminty pulse. Languid vocal lines flowing behind. Hyper-bright trumpets joined later by a rickety carnival organ sampled in above over bridges. Engaging tensions.
3. East Harlem. Wah-wahing field organ opens. Warm, mellow, languid vocal pop unfolds, tempered by shiny sampled brass and a pulse sprinkled along like a long, mid-tempo picket fence in keyboards.
4. Goshen. Warm simple keyboard paired with warmly crooning vocals in a calm comfort song, a warm memory or reverie. All quiet and meditative. And then the tacky trumpets. And earnest snare drums. Wonderful!
5. Payne's Bay. Squealing synthesized fiddles--or is it a field organ?
Read more ›
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