Dirty Beaches - Stateless - Albums - Reviews - Soundblab

Dirty Beaches - Stateless

by paul_guyet Rating:4 Release Date:2014-11-10

My first experience with Dirty Beaches didn't turn out so great.* I'm going to go ahead and blame Alex Hungtai (aka Dirty Beaches), but I promised myself before I heard a note of the new album, Stateless, that I would give him a fair shake. Think of it this way: I'm in a place where literally anything he does will be a massive improvement. Unless he really fucked it up this time round.

Stateless consists of four tracks, totaling 42 minutes. Not off to a great start, man.


Hypnotic, stammering saxophone. For seven-and-a-half minutes. Far more interesting than anything I've heard from DB; frantic, menacing. Soundtrack to an ant-hill or bee-hive. Of course, it would be far more interesting still with something else to it. Experimental in a good way: non-dynamic dynamism.


Biblical horns signify the beginning procession of a city-long march. Echoing forever. Almost liquid, a river of melted down brass bells, in which the listener is drowning. Reverb + delay = eternity.
This was cool for about four minutes. The last seven and a half? Not as much. 
If 'Displaced' is like being in the rain, 'Stateless' is like looking at a picture of the rain.

'Pacific Ocean'

Do you remember Meredith? From the Water Park OST? Well, she brought her cat, Dingles, with her on this visit, and, while he certainly is a cute little nipper, boy, does that spirited scamp like to climb on studio equipment! "No, Dingles! No!" "Well, I guess we'll have to give him a producer's credit!" *laughter*

'Time Washes Away Everything'

There is a joke here about this song washing away my patience that I'm not going to make.
The final track has a very strong A Winged Victory for the Sullen vibe to it, only, less structured... Did you get that? Less structured than A Winged Victory for the Sullen.** Or, maybe, Godspeed You! Black Emperor, but with less effort and skill.

This track teases you. You think it's over, that you've made it and can now listen to... anything! Andy Gibb, The Drugs, Van Halen, Taylor Swift, MC 900 Ft. Jesus, anything that is not Dirty Beaches. But then. Ha! You silly bastard! You've still got eight minutes of this left! Bwa hah! Fool!

Is Stateless as drab as the Water Park OST? No, honestly, I can't think of anything that is... Death, perhaps? But, less awful, droney 'ambient music' is still a measurable quantity of awful, droney 'ambient music'. Put this album on, then leave the house.

* This will really help with context. You know, if you like that sort of thing.

** This will only have impact if you know who A Winged Victory for the Sullen are. For that, I am heartily sorry.

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