Jeff Beam does it again with his thoughtfully crafted brand of warm psychedelia. Beam’s work has a visionary quality to it, and his self-titled album washes over you like a sacred hot spring. Self-titled albums are a bold move, doubly so for performers using their real names. In Jeff Beam’s case, this album shows so much of a human being’s inner workings that the self-title is very fitting. Songs from the mind are lovely, and songs from the heart lovelier still, but songs from the spirit are unbeatable.
The songs "Stephen King" and "Think Twice, It’s Not Alright," came out as singles before the album’s release. They are certainly highlights from a record spun of golden light and cool shadow. To me, the fourth track "Disarray" sounds like an instant radio hit and is one of my favorites from this collection. Its pulsing beat, glimmering synths, and gorgeous backup vocal solo, which darts through the stereo soundscape, make this song a masterpiece. All topped off with catchy lead vocals and heartstring-pulling lyrics. "Peripheral" is the album’s second track and features one of my favorite yet rarely used details a songwriter can throw in: the layering of separate vocal melodies and lyrics. Always a choice that adds so much depth to a song. Final track "The Loaner" gives off a kind of a reverbed-out Beatles vibe.
Every song on this record pays out three-fold in the time it takes to listen to it. From the first listen through I was hooked. I’m even finding this on my heavy rotation off the clock. Its 28-and-a-half minute runtime has me listening to it on a loop and going through Jeff’s back catalog for more. If you haven’t delved deep into his work before, this album is a fantastic entry point. The lyrical themes recognize trouble, heartbreak, and hardship while the sonic world woven by Jeff Beam on Jeff Beam holds you in warm safety.