This article contains opinion.
Bea Kristi, a Filipino-British indie artist known by her stage name beebadoobee, just dropped her latest project, the EP “Space Cadet.”
Her first album, “Patched Up,” has a soft, dreamy, bedroom feel that has almost ghostly vocals. Her second album, “Loveworm,” has a somewhat heavier mood in which she pushes herself a little harder sonically. She considers “Loveworm” to be a bridge of sorts between her projects, and on “Space Cadet,” she rocks out with a heavier sound than her earlier work. However, it still
features her beautifully smoky vocal performances.
Despite a sea of indie performances, she still stands out
because of her unique voice, which is mixed with her instrumentals creatively and her poetically personal lyrical storytelling. She doesn’t have a weak project or song, and “Space Cadet” comes with a new direction and the quality fans of her can expect.
The entire project is somewhat conceptual and features the
aesthetics of space, exploration and isolation throughout the songs. She carries the aesthetic visually as well with an illustrated album cover and music video for her single off of the project.
The first track, “Are You Sure,” jumps right in with the lyrics that go head to head with thick instrumentation. This song features additional guitar instrumentation from Matty Healy, frontman of The 1975. The song features heavy reference to outer space imagery and constantly asks if people understand how she feels and thinks. The idea of being in a vacuum is used to carry the astronomical motif as well as be a metaphor for beebadoobee’s mental loneliness.
The second track and single is “I Wish I Was Stephen Malkmus.” This is a direct reference to
Malkmus, the lead singer of the ‘90s band Pavement.
The song is about her transition into the spotlight and how it feels like she’s coming from outer space. She is constantly changing as a person and as an artist. She is graduating her sound, becoming lonely and dying her hair and relating to her inspirations.
The music video for “I Wish I Was Stephen Malkmus” is a
colorful and energetic ride and toys with a lot of different
imagery. It features her as a test subject and revolting through music against the scientists studying her. It’s fun and stylized.
“Sun More Often” is the third song on this project, and it slows down a little bit, though it ramps up and kicks in with very present guitars. It is a kind song and urges the message of enjoying things and picking oneself out of the storm cloud they may be under. This track features very silky and optimistic vocals that make it as enjoyable as it is.
The fourth song is “She Plays Bass,” a cooler song that is a tribute to her friend Eliana who, as you guessed it, plays bass.
“Eliana brings out the ADHD that I have (in a good way), and we get pretty mental sometimes,” beebadoobee said, “and at times I just feel like we’re in a bubble because no one really gets us, and she’s sick at playing bass. If I didn’t tell you already, she plays guitar.”
The idea of that bubble aligns with the space aesthetic, and she describes her friendship as this new world. She also expresses the influence Eliana has on her identity and who she wants to be, a theme that runs through the EP.
The final and titular song from the EP, “Space Cadet,” finishes off the project by exercising negativity and throwing it out throughout the galaxy, forever faraway. The buildup makes it a satisfying conclusion and it brings a lot of the themes full circle.
Despite being only five songs long, “Space Cadet” have an
impressive and yet not distracting number of themes and
messages that are carried by energetically smooth tracks. It serves in her discography as a shift that compares in quality to her older work and shows her experimentation. Overall, “Space Cadet” is a very positive, interesting and impressive project that I think most people will enjoy.