Leigh MichaelSaturday,5 January 2013

The Snap:

A little weekend treat: Four minutes and thirty-three seconds of your life are about to be well-spent. If you haven’t seen it before, make sure to check out Beirut’s music video for “The Rip Tide,” directed by Houmam Abdallah. Featuring stunning cinematography and equally stunning vocals, this video has the uncanny ability to make you melt into a state of calm.

Zachary Condon, the mastermind behind Beirut, released The Rip Tide in 2011. Last June, he released the video for the title song. Much like his music, the video has a soft, understated quality that will get under your skin and stay there. Beirut is not a band that is easily forgotten.

The Download:

The Rip Tide was not an album that immediately wowed me — just like I wasn’t a diehard fan the first time I heard Gulag Orkestar back in 2006. This seems to be the way with Beirut, as though Condon planned it all along. His music isn’t in your face — and it probably won’t be eating up radio time whenever you turn your stereo on.

But that’s what makes it all the more powerful. They quietly take control. Beirut’s songs are all multi layered pieces — first you appreciate the funky instruments (Condon famously touts the flugelhorn and ukulele), then the lyrics, then Condon’s voice.

It’s certainly no secret that the guy can sing. He doesn’t dress his recordings up with heavy editing — what you hear is pretty much what he has to offer. I first came to that realization when I watched a Take Away Show of “Nantes” — the guy sounds the same strolling down a Paris street as he does on his albums.

“The Rip Tide” offers something special. When paired together, the song and video almost seem like a duet. Condon explains this idea in an interview with Pitchfork, noting that he “always felt that ‘The Rip Tide’ wasn’t fully able to project its own ambitions in song form” and that the video makes the song “available for others to see and feel it much more as I had in the process of writing it.”

Some parts haunting and all parts beautiful, “The Rip Tide” is the perfect way to sail into a quiet weekend. Sit back and enjoy.

Hat Tips:

Youtube, La Blogotheque, Pitchfork, Beirut, Image Credit: Flickr

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