Beirut says "No No No". Fans say "Yes Yes Yes". Jenny O says...4AD, 2015
6.0 / 10
Beirut‘s newest album No No No is their first in about four years since The Rip Tide‘s release in 2011 and seems like a natural follow up to that album. The Rip Tide brought about a huge change in sound with it being the first album to drift away from some of the Balkan tendencies personalized in previous albums while still maintaining a strong sense of identity. No No No continues in this regard but slows down the tempo for a lounge groove with upstrokes accenting the beat while the lead exhibits inherently likeable pop qualities. Zach Condon’s voice helps add to the overall sad and downtrodden mood which brings it all together. That being said, this definitely isn’t the happiest sounding album to be released this year, but its honesty in that regard works to its benefit.
Sitting at just about half an hour, listening to No No No isn’t a strong, lengthy commitment. So if you don’t enjoy it, you won’t be disappointed for very long. Being familiar with Beirut’s previous work has helped me understand what Condon might be trying to do accomplish with this album by taking some very deliberate idea switches in the middle of songs like “Fener” and title track “No No No”. Newer listeners might want to hear “As Needed”, the only instrumental track on the album, as its hooks are what makes this album so easy to listen to. Though No No No isn’t necessarily Beirut’s greatest album to date, it definitely works for the present and is far better AND thoughtful than the vast majority of albums released every week.