The GB Album Club 039 - Expert in a Dying Field by The Beths

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unclejam23

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#1  Edited By unclejam23

Duders! Welcome to the 39th edition of the Unofficial Giant Bomb Album Club! In the weeks past, we listened to a lot of prog and then I drove us off a cliff with The Money Store by Death Grips. This week, we're listening to, wouldn't you know it, just a normal very good album! No time signature changes, no loud men screaming at you about murder and government surveillance. Just some good ol' fashioned indie rock, emphasis on "good," for this week we're listening to Expert in a Dying Field by The Beths, chosen by our good friend @thatpinguino, and you can listen below with these links:

Spotify

Apple Music

Bandcamp

Youtube

Here at the Unofficial Giant Bomb Album Club, we gathered in a discord to make an pool of random albums and we choose one every week to listen to and discuss. If you want to submit your own picks, come join us at said Discord and do so there! And there's no theme this time, so you can submit whatever you want!

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ALLTheDinos

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While I didn’t go head over heels for this album like I did with “Future Me Hates Me”, there are songs I really love. “Silence Is Golden”, “When You Know You Know”, and “I Told You That I Was Afraid” are all bangers, and even the misses are worth sitting through. It ended up #10 on my 2022 list and will be part of my work albums rotation for a long, long time.

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Georgiok

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Joined this website just to gush about this album! Favorite tracks are the title track, "Knees Deep", “Silence Is Golden”, and "Best Left", but they're all quite good!

I think my current ranking for Beths albums is Future Me Hates Me > Expert in a Dying Field > Jump Rope Gazers.

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galaxiid

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I like the record a bunch for sure, Silence is Golden probably my favourite track though I tend to always prefer the shorter faster songs. Nothing beats Not Getting Excited from the previous album for me, but a big part of that is its huge as an opener in a live setting I think.

As an aside being from NZ and having seen them kicking around for nearly a decade now, its awesome to see how far they've come. Even the changes in venue size in the last 2-3 years when they do local tours has been really cool.

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unclejam23

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#5  Edited By unclejam23

I first listened to this album last year when it came out. I liked it. A lot, in fact. But it didn't really stick out to me.

Part of it is because, and I say this as someone who likes this album quite a bit, it's pretty standard stuff as far as indie rock goes. It's clear where it came from and it's clear where it's going, and it doesn't really offer you any surprises along the way. (Put a pin in that.) But it's mostly because between Wet Leg and Nilüfer Yanya and Alvvays (good god that Alvvays album....), 2022 just happened to be an obscenely good year for indie rock/pop, and The Beths just got a little lost in the shuffle in my head.

Now I've listened to his album again without that context, I was able to enjoy it a lot more than I did the first time. The guitars hit heavier, the lyrics penetrated a little more, and most of all, there's a warmth to it that's been lacking in a lot of what I've been listening to in my own time lately. A lot of Miami and Brazilian bass has been traveling through my speakers lately, and compared to that stuff (which, for the record, I love), this felt like a big warm hug.

Yet I still have to say that I think this album is pretty standard as far as indie rock goes. Expert in a Dying Field is, very much, a meat and potatoes indie rock album, and what that means for you will vary depending on how much you dig the sound. Luckily for me, I like me some indie rock, and I'm very much buying what this album is selling.

Sometimes I want to be challenged or presented with something new and revolutionary. Sometimes I want to kick back. Sometimes I want a substantial meal, and sometimes I just want sweets. Sometimes I want Baldur's Gate 3, and sometimes I want Starfield. (Guess how I feel about Starfield so far???) Both experiences are equally desirable, and I actively want one so I can fully appreciate the other. Expert in a Dying Field doesn't do anything new. But so what?

Favorite Songs: "Expert in a Dying Field," "Silence is Golden," "A Passing Rain"

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redwing42

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Not to be reductive, but "ditto."

UncleJam and I are different people, but I have very similar feelings on this one. It is pleasant enough to listen too, but the songs that go a bit harder are more enjoyable. I remember an old XMU(indie rock on satellite) station identification that said basically "If it is a girl with a keyboard, we will play it.". That's kind of how I feel about indie rock. This one is more guitars than keyboards, but put it in front of me, and I'll probably listen to it.