Beirut’s sound is nothing if not consistent, and Gallipoli is no exception. That’s not to say that it’s no better than their other albums, though – while it’s no Gulag Orkestar, it is, in my opinion, an improvement over their last release, NONONO. While both albums have Beirut’s distinct twee sound (complete with an Elephant 6-esque horn section— oh and farfisa. So. Much. Farfisa.), Gallipoli just has a higher number of better tracks. Whereas NONONO really only had its title track, Gallipoli’s first two songs, “When I Die” (1) and “Gallipoli” (2), really bring you in, and there are enough solid picks throughout the album like “Gauze für Zah” (6), “Corfu” (7), and “We Never Lived Here” (11) to keep you listening.
Overall, while this isn’t their best album to date, those who are already Beirut fans won’t be disappointed, and it’s solid and evocative enough of previous works to hook the kind of person who could enjoy Beirut and encourage them to look into the band more. There’s nothing wrong with an album of indie pop where nothing’s really stand-out but isn’t bad either, and Gallipoli’s just that. It’s a good choice for when you’re sitting in your bedroom going “I really want to listen to Andrew Bird, but with farfisa”, but at the same time, I don’t foresee myself putting any particular song from it on a mixtape like I would “Elephant Gun”, “Postcards from Italy”, or “Nantes” (But that could just be the nostalgia talking—or maybe I’m just basic?). – Anne Still