Two weeks from Friday, longstanding Baltimore dream pop duo Beach House will release its first compilation album, the plainly-stated B-Sides and Rarities. The release promises a lot of Easter eggs for day-one devotees of the group such as its cover of Queen’s “Play The Game” (first included on the Dark was the Night compilation in 2009), a few iTunes Sessions recordings of Teen Dream tracks, and most intriguingly, a “cough syrup remix” of “10 Mile Stereo.” Though it mostly rounds up previously-released loosies and remixes, the comp will also feature two brand-new songs, the first of which is “Chariot.”
Like just about every Beach House song outside of “Sparks,” you know “Chariot” is a Beach House track within five seconds-- that dreamy organ/lo-fi drum machine combo is just instantly recognizable at this point. The hazy, slow dance-ready song doesn’t have any of the added polish that first popped up on 2012’s Bloom and persisted at moments on 2015’s Depression Cherry and Thank Your Lucky Stars, despite being culled from sessions for the latter two. This is a classic Beach House song in every sense of the word. Scale back the recording quality a tad and “Chariot” could be mistaken for an outtake from their 2006 debut.
Today the track has been shared with a video that the band calls “a rumination on the creation, cultivation, and confusion of narratives in media.” What this boils down to is shots of a movie theater audience watching clips of JFK, Jackie Kennedy, and Marilyn Monroe interspersed with airplanes and cowboys. We’re sure a deep analysis of this theme is possible, but like the best Beach House music, sometimes it’s best to just admire simple beauty without breaking down the formula.