Destroyer: Artist You Should Know

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(Since Destroyer’s show at the Troubadour tonight is sold out, those who missed out on tickets can enjoy a couple tunes and some choice words from KCRW DJ Raul Campos)


I have to give credit where credit is due. 

Eric J Lawrence, our trusty KCRW Music Librarian and human music encyclopedia, turned me on to this artist when he included the song “Chinatown” on a CD of recent adds to the music library.

To my surprise, we already have more than a half-dozen full length albums and various EPs from Destroyer, but I’m just learning about the front man, Dan Bejar.

I can see why it didn’t cross my radar. The latest record, Kaputt is quite different than his past work.  It’s still guitar driven indie rock, but he goes in a different direction with this one.  Bejar is a collaborator with The New Pornographers, but this album is a definite departure from their traditionally harder sound.  With “Kaputt”, he’s experimented with and incorporated much more melodic, electronic rhythms, as well as different instrumentation.

I really dig the melodies and harmonies that prevail in tracks like “Blue Eyes” and “Chinatown”. His vocals, although they’re soft-spoken, are actually very edgy.

There are even a couple songs I think are fantastic but due to language issues, I can’t play them on air.  I’ll let you check out the full length and find those little nuggets.

The album has tremendous depth in the songwriting, paralleling some of the issues of doom and gloom in Malaparte’s Kaputt, which is where the title for Destroyer’s 9th record comes from.

It truly is fantastic work of expression combined with stellar musical production.

– Raul Campos