Glass Beach’s debate album The First Glass Beach Album is the first album from glass beach. That’s a good place to start, but the album’s plain and descriptive title does little to explain exactly what goes on in the hour-long adventure contained therein.
The First Glass Beach Album was initially self-released by the band in Spring 2019, but it’s roots date back to as early as 2015 - songwriter and band leader j mclendon started demoing songs for the album when they first moved to Los Angeles and spent three years polishing those first demos into these songs with bassist Jonas Newhouse and drummer William White. On their Bandcamp page, the band describes their sound as the accumulation of jazz, new wave, synth music, and emo distorted through the lens of punk.
The songs that make up The First Glass Beach Album are ambitious, theatrical and chaotic. Abandoning genre limitations makes glass beach’s talent for songwriting all the more apparent - mathy guitar leads, catchy drum grooves and the constant interplay of horns, synths, and even the intermittent theremin set the perfect scene for j’s stunning vocal performance, which can shift from a charming falsetto to the lead of a sing-a-long in an instant.