RELEASED 16TH OCTOBER 2020
Favourite track: Back To Mars
This album has a young and rebellious sound to it on a backdrop of Pop Rock sounds that belong in a coming-of-age film.
I first came across London-based Filipino artist, beabadoobee, on TikTok with Powfu’s viral song ‘death bed’ featuring her vocals in a new remix of her acoustic, chill track ‘Coffee’. When I saw that she had released a 12-track album I was keen to review it because her vocals have this soft, delicate appeal that Gen Z listeners have really championed on a backdrop of acoustic or a retro-inspired instrumental. The cover art for Fake It Flowers shows a soft filter photograph of her in a floral outfit holding what seems to be a digital flower with the image split in half and positioned unaligned.
The first track ‘Care’ opens with acoustic guitar strums, her crisp vocals and drumkit. I think I’ve heard this one before either in an advert or something similar. It really feels like the perfect opening song to a coming-of-age film. It’s upbeat, full of energy and got this Pop Rock sound with a blend of electric guitar at the end of each chorus. The Pop Rock vibe continues into ‘Worth It’ but this time it’s got more of a nostalgic, reminiscent tone. Her vocals here are so delicate against the strummed acoustic guitar as she explores a relationship that’s fragile. ‘Dye It Red’ opens playfully with “kiss my ass” as she sings about how she’s sick of being alone and wants to do what she wants. The electric guitar and rock kit that builds at the chorus keeps with the theme of the album so far. The next track ‘Back To Mars’ opens with slow, acoustic strums and atmospheric synths that build slowly. The vocals are soft and sad. It’s a short pretty song with the sound of an ocean on the shore that really takes you to another place. The pace quickens with ‘Charlie Brown’ which brings back a fast-paced guitar, strong bassline and soft Rock sound that then becomes much more lively at the chorus as she repeats “throw it away”.
‘Emo Song’ opens with more waves on a shore and kind of audio sounds. That then cuts and it becomes a slower, acoustic song – the kind Taylor Swift used to make when she first started out. I like the magical sounds in the background and the pacing works nicely with the drum kit, synth sounds and guitar. It’s very listenable and a little more musically intricate than the others I would argue. ‘Sorry’ opens with an audio sound that reminds me of when you connect an amp in. The guitar is slower and the strings are played in a way that builds up some tension. Her vocals are soft on this and work nicely with the strings as emotion is created in her tone as she mentions how it “hurts me”. ‘Further Away’ begins differently with more of a lost paradise feel and then slow Pop Rock kit, acoustic guitar and synths. It’s a catchy song for sure and the pace reminds me of Rumer’s music.
‘Horen Sarrison’ starts off with some subtle strings, upbeat acoustic guitar, chill dream guitar and spacey synths. This one is romantic and really expresses a fascination for the person she is directing this song at. The strings at the chorus provide a nice melody that varies the album a little. ‘How Was Your Day?’ open with an audio of her and her band rehearsing an opening and checking instruments before guitar is brought in. The audio remains in that muffled mic style that was present in ‘death bed’. A clearer, Pop Rock sound bursts through with ‘Together’ that brings it back to that coming-of-age, rebellious feel. The final track ‘Yoshimi, Forest, Magdalene’ starts really randomly with audio mistakes and then Pop Rock drum kit and guitar. It’s got a chaotic vibe to it but it works well and plays consistently with the rest of the album as she insists these words are the names of her future children. A very interesting end to the album I have to say but then the whole album is quirky and crazy so maybe this is the perfect way to end it.
This album would be perfect for a long road-trip with friends.