12 Songs, 44 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Beirut's itinerant singer-songwriter Zach Condon has exhibited a pronounced level of musical wanderlust over the years. Past releases from his indie-folk band showed deep reverence for music from Oaxaca (March of the Zapotec) to Eastern Europe (Gulag Orkestar). Their fifth studio album, Gallipoli, references the seaside Italian town, where Condon and producer Gabe Wax embedded themselves. The album is pure Beirut—melancholic in tone, reflective in word, exploratory in creation. It’s easy to get lost in the strut and melodies of “Gauze für Zah” and the woodblock metronome of “Varieties of Exile,” or be wooed by instruments like the Farfisa organ (“Landslide,” “Gallipoli”) and the well-worn and well-loved horns and ukulele. But songs like “We Never Lived Here” and “When I Die” steer the focus back to Condon’s lyrical acumen and emotional and revelatory delivery. Gallipoli feels like Beirut’s proud, if imperfect, monument, dappled by life and warmed by the Mediterranean sun.

Apple Digital Master

EDITORS’ NOTES

Beirut's itinerant singer-songwriter Zach Condon has exhibited a pronounced level of musical wanderlust over the years. Past releases from his indie-folk band showed deep reverence for music from Oaxaca (March of the Zapotec) to Eastern Europe (Gulag Orkestar). Their fifth studio album, Gallipoli, references the seaside Italian town, where Condon and producer Gabe Wax embedded themselves. The album is pure Beirut—melancholic in tone, reflective in word, exploratory in creation. It’s easy to get lost in the strut and melodies of “Gauze für Zah” and the woodblock metronome of “Varieties of Exile,” or be wooed by instruments like the Farfisa organ (“Landslide,” “Gallipoli”) and the well-worn and well-loved horns and ukulele. But songs like “We Never Lived Here” and “When I Die” steer the focus back to Condon’s lyrical acumen and emotional and revelatory delivery. Gallipoli feels like Beirut’s proud, if imperfect, monument, dappled by life and warmed by the Mediterranean sun.

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Ratings and Reviews

4.5 out of 5
41 Ratings

41 Ratings

Coastie718 ,

Much Better!

Gallipoli is a welcome return to the “Beirut sound.” I’ve been a long time fan of Beirut having been very lucky to see them in 2011. Beirut’s stagnation seemed to have been planted with Sante Fe when the overall tone of the ban having shifted more to pop sounding. When No No No came out, I was angered. It was the most boring album they ever came out with with a sound almost entirely of singer/songwriter/pop. The album was also very short at 29 minutes. Gallipoli thankfully gives us around 45 minutes of new music. Furthermore, the focus is back on each instrument equally rather than Zach’s voice. Don’t get me wrong, I love his voice, but what makes Beirut great is the culmination of each instrument; the brass is just as important as the Ukulele, as Condon’s voice, as the organ, and so on. There’s even a few tracks without vocals that focus on instrumental melody and tone instead. I’ve listened to the album a few times now and have really enjoyed it so far. I took a long break from Beirut after No No No and didn’t think the magic would ever return. It seems Condon has found again what they lost. I still like Beirut’s older albums better; the songs are a bit more varied and the music sounds more of a collaboration with the other members in the band. Gulag Orkestar and The Flying Cup Club really had great variety in the track listing with each song sounding distinctly different than the last. This album sounds like 100% Condon writing style with slower melodies, softer tones, and drawn out denouements. I’m very thankful that this album doesn’t sound overproduced like No No No did. The reason I couldn’t give it 5 stars, and the one question I have for Condon? WHERE’S THE FREAKIN ACCORDION MAN? The accordion has been demoted to minor background noise. I need Beirut rumbling sweeping accordion tracks in my life. Bring back the accordion as a primary lead instrument PLEASE!

Eman Laerton ,

A really pleasant surprise

I simply cannot wait. Beirut is among the few acts that can be considered an experience.

Tip tip jul ,

Beirut

When have they ever disappointed you? Never.

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