New Pornographer Destroyer

Jun 17th, 2010 in Music

OK, now that we have your attention….

The New Pornographers recently released their fifth record, “Together,” and it is provocatively revealing (in a sub-pornographic way).  This “supergroup” consisting of Carl “A.C.” Newman, Dan Bejar and Neko Case has given us some of the best post-millennium pop records to date, and Together is no exception.  Despite the ridiculous group moniker (sidebar:  this is one of the dangers of jokingly adopting an asinine name and then being stuck with it as public awareness pigeonholes you), this is one of the most talented musical collectives currently extant.  And each of the NP’s solo members’ projects are well worth your effort as well.  A.C. Newman’s perfect, off-kilter, math-pop records, “The Slow Wonder” and “Get Guilty,” are wonders.  And Neko Case’s stellar reverb-enriched vocals and records are universally critically-acclaimed (our pick being her 2002 “Blacklisted” record, but every one worthy).

But the band’s new Together recording is somewhat unique in the band’s ouevre because some of the best moments on the record are not delivered by Newman or Case, but instead by Dan Bejar.  We have been huge fans of Dan Bejar and his Destroyer band since the beginning of this century.  Destroyer’s “This Night” and “Destroyer’s Rubies” records are amongst our favorites, consisting of Bejar’s usual cryptic-poetic lyrics, early-70’s Bowie stylistics and stunning melodies.

Check out Bejar on Together’s Daughters of Sorrow and on a few great Destroyer songs.

The New Pornographers–Daughters of Sorrow

[audio:|titles=11 Daughters Of Sorrow]

On Destroyer’s This Night the band is in melodious form and a perfect example of Bejar’s lyricism is laid out:

They led us on
They said it would be yours
Tear down the borders, stop patrolling the shores
Let us in

We wrote a winter song
Come on, come on, come on, come on, come on
Don’t shelve the opera
You’ve been working this long on it
Twelve years on the east side
And still so house proud

All the neighberhood angels
Are humming the songs [hum along]
To themselves again
Oh they seem to think that when you show up
You’d look good in somebody’s arms

Oh, you should have been a clerk
You should have stayed a stranger
You should have just done the work
But it’s too late now school’s out

Wildcats – you were supposed to go wild
Butchers – you shouldn’t be obsessed with a child
Now Diorama Pete thinks he just sunk the fleet
Much like him you know I live to be cornered
So come on

Hey, Easterner, open your mouth
Don’t speak in tones
I know there’s beauty in the bones of the dam that burst
I know you look good in the shadow of the diamond monger’s thirst
But get out

To the west there is an ocean
There is a mountain on the right
Now will you walk away
Or take the blame for the unfortunately named
Children of this day; children of this night”

Destroyer–This Night

[audio:|titles=01 This Night]

And on Destroyer’s Holly Going Lightly, we love how the song gets heavier and yet manages to lift off at second :19.  And the closing refrain and coda kill.  We also favor the first stanza’s obliquely brilliant lyrics (“I am ravening”!! and “Like deciphering what it means when the band goes “DooRah DooRah DooRah DooRah!”–pot-calling-the-kettle-black kinda thing).

Check out the full lyrics and enjoy below:

“I was stark… I was ravening…
I was idle in spring, and it felt good…
I was fashioned after something made of wood, that I shouldn’t have done…
Some girls got guns…
And some get into running favors for the Queen,
Like deciphering what it means when the band goes –
“DooRah DooRah DooRah DooRah!”

I was ‘bedsit’ and reviews were rave…
I dug your poetry a grave and it felt good…
I was modeled after something made of wood, that I shouldn’t have done…
Some boys build guns…
And some have built the running errands for the King
like making out the words when the band goes –
“DooRah DooRah DooRah DooRah!”

Hey there, pretty flower…
Get yourself together…
Mama’s been looking for you,
But mama should know better.

I was silver… I was gold…
I watched Holly going lightly down the road…”

Destroyer–Holly Going Lightly

[audio:|titles=02 Holly Going Lightly]

Oh and here’s the great Sweet Talk from Together featuring Newman and Case

The New Pornographers–Sweet Talk

[audio:|titles=05 Sweet Talk, Sweet Talk]

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