Beach Jesus was born from the darkest regions of the pop universe; where the closest source of light is millions of miles away and all is lost, save your weightless, floating conscious advancing into the great unknown. Their music is difficult to grasp, at once both seeming oddly familiar and quite alien. The Chicago quartet manipulate textures and forms flippantly, filling every square inch of every minute with disparate sounds; they create an amalgamation of unique ideas and influences, which can be initially hard to stomach, but will ultimately be worth exploring.
The group consists of Chitown natives Chandler London, Jommis, JAROFMY, and SEER. Two Week Vacation is the groups latest mixtape; a ten track odyssey into their world of dream-pop, the land given birth through nature documentaries, muted Miyazaki films, and thick blunt smoke. While it is a slow burner at the start—"Hotel Colosseum" tries too much, too fast, and not all together flattering—once it picks up, towards the third or fourth track, it will have already ensnared you and taken you away for the ride.
Save for a few exceptions, Jommis and Chandler London deliver majority of Beach Jesus' lyrics (this includes the former singer's/rapper's alter-ego Jessiath). Whether harmonizing or following behind one another, these two have a great chemistry together. They rift off each other's thematic inspirations and help bring various perspectives together seamlessly. Their emotion are usually layered behind a mountain of cool, but Jommis and Chandler tag team approach keeps you attentive for what comes next. For example,"Time Wasted" sees both trading self-conscious verses about not really being worthy of their lover and their affection, seemingly ruining someone valuable with their valueless presence. A song befit none other than Lord of the hip-emo, Drake, these two pull it off without sounding forced or cheesy.
JAROFMYand SEER take the production reigns for Beach Jesus and Two Week Vacation. Since these are the men behind the music, a lot of the strange flavors found on this mixtape are directly related to their talent. Jommis and Chandler don't make it easy for their bandmates either, jumping from singing to rapping in a moment's notice. However, JAROFMY and SEER make sure everything is running smoothly, keeping pace or taking unexpected turns quicker than the two performers or listeners can fully comprehend what is actually happening. This quality is one of the reasons songs like "Muddy Waters," "Papaya," and "Saint James" are so intoxicating and enjoyable to hear.
A lot can be said about Two Week Vacation, but it would probably take forever. For all of Beach Jesus' experimentation, a surprising number of successes can be found. Their music isn't for everybody, yet if you can find something to enjoy in it, you will quickly find yourself stuck, zoning out.