Various Artists - Teen Beach Movie
Jan 7, 2020
So I believe that Teen Beach Movie, as an album, is secretly a psychotic, nihilistic anti-matrimony concept record about a serial killer coming to terms that they have a serious blood-lust. Let me explain.

First off, before I do a deep dive, let me just say that I don't 'like' this record. The production is too overblown, the singing is too clean, at taken face value with the film it doesn't have a lot of substance and it just gets grading after a while. However, I have to agree that the musical influences are a lot more bearable on this record then I was expecting. This sounds like what would happen if you forced a shitty AI to make a Beatles album and all the data you gave it was Greece and The Beach Boys, but somehow halfway through tried to delete its own programming. It's not a record i'll ever come back to. However...when taken a little more is what I came up with.

We start with an act of murder on the track 'Oxygen'. The lyrics could depict a crush, but more so shows a women hunting a man down and burning them alive. The lyrics 'Boy I’m not hurtin’ for inspiration, and I feel when we’re together, It could be forever and ever and ever' shows an immediate craving for companionship, so much so that it causes a violent outburst.

'What you give you will receive
So baby bring it all to me
And I will warm you like the sun
I always knew you were the one.'

The one in this albums case is 'The One' that the person will later kill in the record, as the killer character of Mach is introduced on the next track, Surf Crazy.

In Surf Crazy, we set the scene that the character of the killer resides: California. (Side note: California is where Charles Manson resided. Just Saying.) This song is more of a world building song, showing the California location while also setting up how fake happy society is in this period. Everyone just wants to go 'Surf Crazy', leaving Mach an outcast by societies standards. The pained delivery of '...I'm Mach' only underlines this.

Crusing for a Brusin' sees the inner demons inside all of society, showing the characters singing from Surf Crazy wanting pain on the inside and say that they are all 'Crusing for a Brusin'' as they see the act of love as nothing but a fleeting moment in time, only to be ended with 'Bruises', as they ride all day in search of this fleeting moment. Of coarse Mach takes this much more literally, with society demanding you must find love, then get married, then have kids, then get divorced, then do it all again pressuring every character into this Californian Stereotype that we will see later on the track 'Like Me'. This song seems to be the most pained on the tracklist.

Falling For Ya follows up after, showing that fleeting moment before the buries, and foreshadows the downfall of the women singing this song later in the tracklist. This song is the most devoid of the serial killer concept, but could be interpreted as the character literally falling, as the killings from Mach start to become more rampant as Mach gets a blood lust, and the character singing maybe be falling for her lover trying to protect her crush, only to be killed in the next track.

Meant to Be is another song about killing, comparing the act to love. This song will become a motif for Mach to kill to, as it appears twice in the tracklist, both signifying another death which Mach has caused. The song starts with the couple from Falling for Ya singing about being in love, and 'going kinda crazy' in the chorus, while the killer Mach from before starts hunting for specific people such as 'a girl who likes music' and 'a boy with perfect hair', going kinda crazy themselves. It should be noted that the swtich from male to female leaves Mach a gender-less metaphor for the blood-lust. Once they have found 'the one', they try to kill the couple but fail and only kill the girl (as predicted in Falling For Ya), leaving them trying to go to 'plan b' as they psychotically sing 'lalala' as they hunt down their injured victim.

'When its meant to be, you go kind crazy'

Like Me presses pause on the chase of the killers and sees a peak into the victims lives, looking at how they got ready on the date of their death. This is a symbolic track, showing the pressure of the Calfornian lifestyle sending these people to madness (having to be 'perfect' for the other partner). The crushing expectations of people that need to be 'like me' sends Mach on their rebellious bloodlust.

Meant to Be Reprise 1 sees the repeating actions of the killer, repeated. They found the injured victim from Meant to Be, and have killed him.

Can't Stop Singing is a really interesting song in the tracklist, as it almost reflects the audience listening to the record as well as the morals of the characters, with this song in particular almost being a 4th wall breaking moment in the track-list. Mach feels so much joy from killing that they immediately want to start singing, but feel a need to try to suppress their feelings for killing due to societal pressures. The line 'Please press the DVR' could be an overt nod to violent media glorified by California from the likes of Tarintino (almost a Manson esq commentary). However, in the end, they realize that they are trapped in their own 'musical' as the joy overtakes them and cant help but sing about their joy through their killings. The final line of 'It's Over' reflects the characters need to appeal to the status quote, and the expectations are finally 'over'.

This feeling of joy is then underlined with yet another reprise of Meant to Be, showing another victim being killed. From here, the story takes a much more metaphorical stance.

This next song is the most sadistic and terrifying of them all: 'Surfs Up'. Mach is no longer suppressing their blood-craving nature, and instead exclaiming and warning the world to 'Grab your girl, your boy and hold on ti-ight' as they venture to cure their blood lust through the act of murder. This is basically a track where Mach exclaims 'i'm a killer and i'm proud.' The 'Surfing' metaphor shows the pure elation of how Mach is feeling.

The Coolest Cats in Town is an odd one that ends the albums on it's core message: a positive 'don't bring yourself down to societal pressures'-esq message that acts like Lizzo have employed in their music, but here it's shown in a much more twisted way by coating the darkness in a suave overtly happy coat of paint. This track is almost a symbolic track, saying that there is a symbolic killer inside all of us, showing that society may try to suppress you like 'Elivs' (who is mentioned in this track) but you can rise up against it like 'The Coolest Cats', showing a much more positive message then one usually expects from a murder ballad record.

However, it isn't all peaches and cream. The album ends on 'Surf Crazy Finale', an almost nihilistic epilogue note to end the album on, as the instrumental from Surf Crazy comes back. Societal pressure still exists and is still extremely present in this universe, and the track presents itself as a almost a 'Watch Your Back' message, while ending the album on it's California setting, almost as a message of 'yes, society will never change, so fucking go Surf Crazy'.

And that's why I think that Teen Beach Movie is actually an alagory for murder. Thank you. I'm going to cry myself to sleep.

Favorite Jams: N/A

Lest Favorite: Oxygen
Jan 7, 2020
you put too much effort into this... mad respec
Jan 7, 2020
I like this a lot but you gave it such a low score :,(! Still enjoyed the review!!!
Jan 7, 2020
@TreyLikesBands this is my legacy
Jan 7, 2020
This makes a disturbing amount of sense...
Jan 7, 2020
You gave clipping. A 98 but this classic a 19?
Jan 8, 2020
@Toasterqueen12 what can I say, i'm a sucker for scary things
Jan 8, 2020
the fuk u on? I wan sum
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