21 year old Bea Kristi (aka Beabadoobee) is an artist unafraid to wear her influences on her sleeve; if ‘Fake It Flowers’ was her attempt at cosplaying mosh pit-ready 90s rock, it’s follow-up ‘Our Extended Play’ sees her unapologetically embrace the pop-rock sound of the decade that followed. At an economic 13 minutes in length, ‘Our Extended Play’ is a concise but surprisingly fully realised project filled with quintessential coming-of-age tales that alternate between anxiety and hedonistic exuberance.
The lockdown project was co-produced and written with Matty Healy of The 1975, and his fingerprints are all over this 4-track EP; from the cleaner, more commercial production to the lyricism (“You got a problem with Peter, you got a problem with John”). Still, Beabadoobee imprint is never lost on ‘Our Extended Play’, even if it occasionally seems buried. The dizzying combination of self-doubt and confidence that radiated on ‘Fake It Flowers’ is still here and the best parts of this project (like the epic guitar solo on ‘Cologne’) frankly, rip harder than anything the 1975 have done in recent memory.
‘Our Extended Play’ isn’t without fault. While it’s a more cohesive and consistent project than it’s predecessor; it’s lows aren’t as low as ‘Fake It Flower’s’, it’s highs also aren’t as high; nothing here reaches the pure ecstasy of ‘Worth It’ or ‘Dye It Red’. Meanwhile, lyricism – a noted flaw on Kristi’s debut – is still lacking somewhat here: she too often relies on cliched rhymes like “bed” and “head” and, “told” and “old”. Like ‘Flowers’, ‘Our Extended Play’ has perhaps one too many rough edges, but it showcases yet more hints that Beabadoobee is not just another sad-sap zoomer artist made famous by Tik Tok, but potentially a once in a generation talent.
Best Tracks: Last Day On Earth, Cologne