Artist – Album: Destroyer – Destroyer’s Rubies
Released: 21st February 2006
Sounds Like: Dan Bejar’s wonderfully weird present for you
Today seems to be the day of many birthdays. My little sister turns 22 today, which she’ll be celebrating by working a 10 hour shift in the local bar. Lucky girl. It’s also my uncle Bob’s (yep, Bob is my uncle) big day, a guy that we sometimes call Sorry Bob because of the prolific number of apologies he fires out in regular conversation. Robert Mugabe, Nina Simone and Alan Rickman were all born on this day, some of whom went on to have less of a positive effect on the world than others (I’m thinking of you, Professor Snape). And my friend’s daughter is celebrating her third birthday today. Happy birthday Ruby! Emily’s Ruby is exactly 4 years younger than Destroyer’s Rubies, today’s item of vaguely music related bloggery.
Destroyer (aka Dan Bejar) has a moniker that you’re more likely to associate with some death metal band, but in fact his niche is more of a sonic, free-flowing indie rock. On Destroyer’s Rubies he crafts epic length rock songs, occasionally punctuated by distorted guitar solos and sing-a-long chants, but more often populated by Bejar’s wonderful slacker vocals spouting cryptic poetry.
With its labyrinthine song structures and Destroyer’s innate oddness, there’s a lot here that, on paper, should scare off the casual listener. Descriptions such as avant garde aren’t far wide of the mark. At times the enigmatic lyrics are impenetrable. But elsewhere they’re brilliant in their simplicity, as in album highlight ‘Painter in Your Pocket’ – “I didn’t stand a chance, I couldn’t stand at all, you looked OK with the others, you looked great on your own”. This was the seventh studio album by Destroyer and with experience he’s learnt to weave his weird and wonderful stories around mesmerizing melodies. It’s a record that thankfully defies those theoretical repellents and it’s been a real pleasure to listen to. Happy birthday to me.
Albumaday... rating: 7/10
1. Rubies – 9:25
2. Your Blood – 4:14
3. European Oils – 4:52
4. Painter in Your Pocket – 4:09
5. Looters’ Follies – 7:25
6. 3000 Flowers – 3:46
7. A Dangerous Woman Up to a Point – 6:01
8. Priest’s Knees – 3:06
9. Watercolours into the Ocean – 4:43
10. Sick Priest Learns to Last Forever – 5:53
Listen to ‘Painter in Your Pocket’: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VBWg9HEomLs