Beach Goons: hoodratscumbag Album Review

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By Iliana Ramirez
Music Journalist

Artist: Beach Goons
Album: hoodratscumbag
Label: GRNDW
Release Date: August 24, 2018

In a total of 26 minutes, Beach Goons captures their youthful, California sound on their sophomore album, hoodratscumbag. Following up from their first album, Boisad, the trio has distanced themselves from the “surf” label. The San Diego based band stays true to their Hispanic roots on this record by incorporating the Spanish language on several tracks. With the punk and cumbia elements this album offers, one word to accurately describe it is energetic. Each track jumps straight into one another, keeping listeners glued in.

Pablo, Chris, and David are the young trio who make Beach Goons who they are. With each member being of Mexican descent and originating in the San Diego area, they make sure that this is apparent on the album. The album has a coming of age theme and explores the vulnerability that comes with young age. This is portrayed in songs such as “Miedo” where the lead singer repeats, “I don’t want to cry, every single night, alone inside, mama can’t you tell now.” Although these lyrics are much darker than the sound of the album, they are honest and relatable.

The band opens up hoodratscumbag with the track “A.M.” In comparison to other tracks on the record, this one is the longest and most complex. In this introductory song, the band pairs a fast-paced drum beat and guitar riff to get the energetic sound that defines this record. Lyrically, the band mixes it up by writing half of the song in English and the other half in Spanish. Continuing the energetic theme are the next two songs, “Hunny Bunnies” and “Vatos Tristes”, both of which explore the rocky sides of relationships.

One of the aspects I admire most about this album are the two fully instrumental songs, “Artificial Flowers” and “Chillon”. With these two songs, the band is experimenting with their sound and drifting further from the “surf” genre which many put to their name. The rest of the album offers a much more rowdy and loud tone. It is refreshing to see the band step away from this sound with two tracks that are soft and even have a nostalgic feeling. The title, “Chillon,” refers to a Spanish slang word which translates to “cry baby” in English. The muffled and slow guitar riff which fills the entirety of the song pairs perfectly with the title.

From playing house shows in their hometown to playing large festivals like Riot Fest in Chicago, the band is slowly but surely making their name known everywhere. Beach Goons set out to reshape their sound on this record and were completely successful. This young band is just getting started and I cannot wait to hear what they will be sharing next. The band will be heading to Texas on Oct. 2 with their show at Barracuda.

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