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Hazy Shores: Half Mile Beach Group’s “Yankee”

The Straight-Ahead Take: With a name like Half Mile Beach Group and hailing from Zushi, a certain tropical flair is expected from this outfit. It is a bit of a special project — Half Mile Beach Group reps for Half Mile Beach Club, a party held in Zushi every once in awhile, which has hosted acts such as Slow Beach in the past. Whatever the background, “Yankee” delivers the island vibes, with a shuffling beat and sweetly sung words…that turn unintelligible and practically drip down the song, giving it a slightly unnerving edge. Every paradise has something sneaky lurking within. Listen above.

The Slightly Personal Take: “So what music do you like?” This question comes up a lot when I meet new people, and it is always annoying because the general answer is way too general (“well, all types of music!”), while getting more specific runs the chance of making me look like an asshole/leaving to something awkward. In all honesty, one list of “music I like” is a collection of what interests me now, an ever-changing mental notepad of songs making up the now. But hidden deeper lies a list of music that survived the transient nature of that first tier and manages to deliver the same emotional punch whenever I turn it on. That’s probably the list I should share with people.

One reason I like “Yankee” by Half Mile Beach Group is because it reminds me a bit of one of the artists on that latter list, Air France. This isn’t the space to gush about that long-disbanded unit…though simply by opening that YouTube video, I’m flush with feelings…but in “Yankee” I hear many similar qualities, if not quite as gorgeous. The sea-side vibe, sure, but also the unease hidden within — Half Mile Beach Group’s vocals are near impossible to understand at first, and they only melt further as the song goes further. It’s a great mix, and “Yankee” is an absolute charmer.