By Angela Phillips
Album: Patched Up & Loveworm
Release Date: December 7, 2018 & April 26, 2019
Beabadoobee is a bedroom pop singer/songwriter from London. Patched Up is Beabadoobee’s first album released on December 7, 2018, and Loveworm is her second, released April 26, 2019. Beabadoobee’s acoustic sound is plugged into the vein of music’s current path: it’s soft, it’s catchy, it’s genuine. Her music celebrates a younger kind of infatuation, the nostalgic thrill when you see your crush walk into your shared math class.
Her songs are anthems to all teenagers, or anyone who remembers their teenage years, and might take the listener to an easier time or place. It’s hard to keep heavy issues in mind when listening. I have bills to pay and appointments to keep, all of which melt away while I mindlessly hum along to the tune of “Apple Cider.”
Both albums focus on intimate relationships and share similar, if not the same, theme and sound. Loveworm’s strongest tracks include “Disappear,” “Apple Cider” and “You Lie All the Time,” while Patched Up’s strongest tracks include “Everest,” “Dance With Me” and “If You Want To.”
Patched Up opens with “Everest,” a barren track that showcases Beabadoobee’s angelic voice most prominently. It’s one of the most intimate and soft tracks that Beabadoobee’s released and feels like a personal serenade from the artist herself.
“Art Class,” from Patched Up, triggers the most nostalgia for myself and seems to revel in high school emotions and imagery. Plucking a guitar and the occasional addition from keys or strings keep this track focused on the lyrics of Beabadoobee finding herself a new crush. A very similar sounding track in the same album is “Eighteen,” although it’s more targeted at Beabadoobee’s fear of becoming an adult.
Loveworm’s “Disappear” should be, in all ways, a heartbreaking track. The lyrics describe losing the “rush of love” and yet Beabadoobee’s delivery and tone make it relaxing and sweet to listen to despite the subject matter.
Loveworm’s third track, “Apple Cider,” is one of the most fun tracks of both albums. With a bouncy, conversational Beabadoobee doing her best to initiate a relationship with someone, she tells them “let’s give this thing a try.” There’s a short guitar solo that adds to the playful attitude of the song, and the chorus is one of the catchiest on the album seeing as I keep attempting to extract it from my brain and it keeps coming back.
The fifth track of Loveworm, “Angel,” has a lyrical connection to Patched Up’s “Everest,” and has a sound suited for driving in the late hours when there’s no one else on the road. An electric guitar opens up the sound of the track and makes it feel vibrant.
The albums have a similar makeup of tracks as well, keeping mostly to Beabadoobee’s dreamy lullaby-like sound best exemplified in “Tired” and “1999,” from Patched Up and Loveworm respectively. However, both have a few tracks that pick up a less intimate sound. Loveworm has the tracks “Apple Cider,” “You Lie All the Time” and to a lesser extent, “Angel”; Patched Up has “If You Want To,” all of which feature a heavier focus on full band sounds rather than just Beabadoobee with a guitar. “Apple Cider,” in particular, opens up an interesting sound with extra background vocals, creating a downright lively track that you could dance to.
My personal favorite is “If You Want To,” a catchy but soft tune about sharing a bed. The inquiry feels innocent and sweet, a tone that’s matched in the music video. It’s an undeniably youthful song, something that takes the mind back to stolen moments that made the 16-year-old heart in your chest pound.
At the centerpiece of every song is Beabadoobee’s voice. Beabadoobee has an overall lonely quality to her sound, perhaps stemming from her melodic voice that is the backbone of her songs and lyrics. She sings like you’d expect a wayward, lovelorn teenager to sing: beautifully. Her lyrics romanticize small aspects of relationships that couples may take for granted, but those between relationships might miss fondly.
I think both Patched Up and Loveworm are perfect listening for many occasions, including: late night listening, when you can’t sleep because you’re thinking of someone special, slow dancing at any school dance or if you’re a main character in a coming-of-age romance.
Impossibly, Beabadoobee serenades you to fall in love with being young and confused, and makes you excited to find your next crush. She’s undeniably found a consistent, pleasing sound and I eagerly look forward to what she does next.