Used to Be by Beach House…. [THE song]

So, I skipped a set of very enjoyable songs just to get to Used to Be. (As I said before, I believe the first five songs are perfect whole.) I chose this song because it was constantly hammering my head with its melody and haunting vocals. The parallel interaction between the keyboard and Victoria Legrand’s voice is unbelievably captivating to the point of becoming memorable. The accompanying simplistic drum beat and tambourine are delightful to the ear. To me, a rock music lover, accustomed to guitar riffs and solos and heavier tonalities, Beach House was somewhat out of my comfort zone; nevertheless, the beautiful simplicity of their music and the way it captivated is what amazes the most.

Through the album, the songs portray a variation of powerful emotions assembled in a narrative. It has its own flow. This musical river is constructed so we can bring back those long-kept memories of our first love. Zebra, for example, is about the birth of a relationship, one in which we believe that we know someone completely. Then, we have Silver Soul, a song that reminded me of the sexual magnetism of a recently in-love couple. With Norway and Walk in the Park, there is a feeling that nothing is quite right and lovely as before. Therefore, following a game of perception-deception; I think Used to Be is just the moment when the singer realizes that “his special one” is not what she thought it was. He has changed.

I think this idea is perfectly represented in the following verse:

“Now you know, is it just for show,
just a foolish game that you hide behind?
Don’t forget the nights when it all felt right,
are you not the same as you used to be?”

While it’s unbelievably hard not to sing along these words, the powerful message beneath them astonishes me. Haven’t we all felt that the person next to us is not really who he or she appeared to be? Haven’t we all thought how good a relationship seemed to be, but it really wasn’t?

Those are the type of questions and memories that this song evokes in me; and this is why it is my favorite song from Teen Dream.

Keeping that in mind, I would definitely rate this with 5 out of 5.

I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!


One comment on “Used to Be by Beach House…. [THE song]

  1. Oh Helen,

    I love you so much for making my job so incredibly easy right now.

    Again, describing how you felt for this song, what this song means, how you were eagerly awaiting it to stream on your ipod/computer/whatever. Just sheer beauty. Victoria LeGrand would be proud :]

    However! There are actually two slightly different versions of this song, which is super weird. I usually listen to the sxsw video for “used to be” and I purposely bought the single just for that different drum beat. I know, it seems silly but it’s a better version of the song.

    On a side-note, and back to your project. You should try googling interviews with the artists on their inspiration for songs. I remember an interview I read a few years ago with LeGrand stating how she doesn’t think of words, but rather allows them to take shape and form themselves into the song. As if they’re molding themselves to what she wants them to do. It was a little trippy, but maybe this philosophy of things falling into place and molding goes onto their theme of loss and confusion throughout their “love” songs.

    Ah, but your post was beautifully done, keep up the amazing work.


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