With their first album Tourist History causing massive media exposure just over two years ago, Two Door Cinema Club’s Beacon has a lot to live up to. While some criticise the band as merely fitting into a transient trend, that record not only proved they can churn out catchy indie pop tunes but also hinted there might be more creativity locked up and unfulfilled due to hesitancy and inexperience. Beacon should, by rights, further the reaches of the Bangor trio. Unfortunately it doesn’t.
Though producer Jacknife Lee is sure to make the album profitable, it is still hit and miss with many of the same faults as the first one. Yes, songs such as ‘Next Year’ carry on the preppy bounce of their earlier work, but other tracks like ‘Spring’, ‘Pyramid’ and ‘Beacon’ are forgettable and just too similar. At its worst it is formulaic with saccharine lyrics but on occasion it does hint that they have something more to give. The familiar staccato beat is in top form on ‘Sleep Alone’, while ‘The World is Watching (With Valentina)’ with its dreamy female vocals breathes fresh life into the album. Disappointingly, tracks such as ‘Sun’ fail midway through, losing their edge and becoming indistinguishable and the record fades to a lack lustre close with the so-so title track. Nice enough, Beacon ultimately fails to offer any new insights into Two Door Cinema Club. An opportunity wasted.