Friday, March 21, 2008

Record Review: Destroyer: Trouble in Dreams

The indie rock band, led by the prolific, beloved Canadian singer/songwriter Dan Bejar, releases its follow-up to the well-received effort Destroyer's Rubies.

Rating: 4/5
Dream life is a natural world for Destroyer’s idiosyncratic Den Bejar to explore. Bejar’s poetry of loosely constructed phrases and images has always defied clear interpretation. "We live in darkness/ this is the light of dream, you see…" he says in the eight minute “Shooting Rockets.”

Trouble in Dreams is the work of a confident songwriter. Bejar is unafraid to be theatrical, obscure, and self referential. If Bejar compromised his style and shortened songs, cleared up meanings, and took out peculiar references, he would instantly lose his startling originality.

Bejar, unlike many folk artists, uses his music to compliment his poetry rather then just provide a background. His music accentuates and many times mimics the words. He stretches the folk form, which relies on simple chords, by making the music essential to the effect of the words. This is the charm of Destroyer, from Bejar’s poetic and musical collage, memorable phrases stick out.

Trouble in Dreams fully realizes Bejar’s strength. It is a dense, fragmented psychological portrait of Bejar and his dreams. Bejar’s character tumbles through his songs; a wine and coffee drinking urban poet, obsessed women, government, religion, animals, and landscapes. The strength of Trouble in Dreams is it’s literary, novelistic essence. It will piss off listeners looking for a quick and easy emotional payoff, but it will reward listeners willing to get beyond Bejar’s original weirdness.

-Matt Gasda

Destroyer - Foam Hands

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1 comment:

Andrew said...

Thanks for the Destroyer bio. Cause we didn't know who they were before.

Next time write an album review.