July 03, 2019 – Ally Soriano
Summer has officially come to an end but Japanese indie pop band Never Young Beach makes you want to live out the season all over again. If you’ve never heard of them before, now is the time to listen up. Never Young Beach’s surf rock songs are as essential to the season as bikinis and beaches.
The 4-piece group first brightened up our summers in 2015 when they released their debut album, Yashinoki House. It featured the smooth subdued voice of head vocal Abe Yuuma which was contrasted by the catchy and complicated guitar riffs backing it. Since then they’ve gone on to release fam fam (2016), A Good Time (2017), and most recently, STORY (2019).
When you first listen to the STORY, released this May, you’re greeted by the happy, welcoming sound of a marimba that more or less sets the tone for the whole album. Fun, easygoing, mellow. But underneath the relaxing tropical facade is a surprisingly tragic story of happy memories with a lost love.
In the first track "Let’s Do Fun," Yuuma paints a picture of having fun every day with someone on a carefree summer which is followed through by STORY that promises the destined love between the two to be anything but storybook. "Wait For The Spring" is where things go awry as he expresses that his partner deserves better and leaves, promising to come back after winter. We follow his cold, solitary journey in "It’s Boring," relive his sunny spring memories in Spring Flower, and listen to his regretful longing in "It Always Rains."
As if it couldn’t get any more heart wrenching, "I Walked" seemingly chronicles the end of his voyage where he seemingly passes and bids his former love to be free and no longer think of him in "I Think So." And finally, "The Spirit of the Past" leaves a moving message about moving on and beginning again, in short, a poetic ending to our tale.
Some people argue that there’s not enough variety in their music. Each song mixes together like a summer cocktail, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. When you listen to them, sometimes it’s hard to tell where one ends and the other begins. But what you would discover is that each one delivers a never-ending summer style that we simply can’t get enough of.
To compare their style to another lowkey but just as talented artist in the Western music scene, Bahamas and his stellar song "All The Time" comes to mind. Although Bahamas sticks to a faster tempo, they both still have that atmosphere to their songs that keeps you torn between feeling at ease and in anticipation.
Whether you need something for your last minute pool party or for a drive to the nearest beach, you’re sure to find a track of theirs to boost your mood. So be sure to keep the band in your playlist for your spontaneous out-of-town trips or whenever you want a splash of summer in your everyday. Check out their songs here.
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