The Bees (formerly known as A Band of Bees) has always seemed a wonderfully pleasant enigma. A quartet from the tiny Isle of Wight, The Bees have evolved through three records from a spacey melodic pop band to a trippy rock band whose sound seems derived equally from 60’s Haight Street psychedelia to traditional R&B. As much as it is difficult to find a thematic arc from album to album, even amongst the ten delectable grooves on “Octopus,” the sound moves fluidly from an Afrobeat organ infused song like “Got to Let It Go” into a brass saturated Motown classic like “Just a Listening Man.”
In an era where most bands have a hard enough time mastering even one genuinely unique style, The Bees have extracted some of the most seminal beats from bygone eras and refashioned them into such a contemporary style that it actually feels completely original. Whether you are an indiephile or musicologist or merely passive music lover, this record will tap a universal nerve.