Track Review: The Beachland Ballroom // IDLES

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Bristol rock band IDLES cut through the gloom with their latest single, ‘The Beachland Ballroom’. The track is the first taste of the band’s upcoming album, Crawler, following last year’s Ultra Mono.

Like the band’s previous releases, this track is an arena-ready rock anthem, pairing Joe Talbot’s soulful drawl with twinkling background music, sharp tambourine and thundering drums. Talbot’s vocals lead the listener through the song’s triumphant, emotional journey as he soulfully sings “I was on my knees for days/ And then I set on all fours/ And I made, I made, I made, I made”.  Whilst the repetition of “damage” in the chorus suggests a sense of failure, these lyrics convey the idea of getting up when something knocks you down.

The gorgeous and gripping track is accompanied by a video, directed by LOOSE, which is as raw and intimate as the song itself.

Describing the song, which he regards as “the most important song on the album”, Talbot says “ We’re at a place where we’re actually allowed to go to these big rooms and be creative and not just go through the motions and really appreciate what we’ve got.”

Whilst the track is personal to Talbot and the band, it speaks to humanity in general as we’re dealt poor hands but, time and time again, we get through it. This is emphasised by the way that the song builds from soft vocals to a louder, emotional plea.

The first tease of their upcoming album, ‘The Beachland Ballroom’ affirms that IDLES have more to offer than their usual post-punk crowd pleaser. The signature rawness remains but the soul sound laced into this track, suggesting an exciting new direction ahead.

Words by Jen Rose


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