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So Dan Deacon‘s upcoming, long-awaited, much discussed, new album, Bromst, leaked yesterday. At least it’s the first day I noticed its appearance in the freebie format. Deacon has said the new album is darker. The album’s first single has already been digested. Deacon told the Baltimore City Paper that he thought of Bromst as more of an album than 2006’s Spiderman of the Rings:
“Unlike Spiderman, which was essentially a one-man, purely electronic piece of music, Bromst was recorded entirely live and written to be performed by a 15 person band.”
Apparently, the album has a narrative, too. Whatever his intentions, Deacon still knows how to build a song. The songs may feel like your walking through a Lucky Charms forest (the chipmunks return) but this time he’s figured out the low end, too. And, well, occasionally unprocessed singing. “Padding Ghost” and album opener,”Build Voice,” are beautiful examples of Deacon’s fresh use of the slow build. “Snookered” is the saddest Wham City nursery rhyme you’ll have ever heard.
“Of the Mountains” finds its footing in skewered poly-rhythms and mournful wordless chants before melting into an (indie) dance floor stomper. Midway in, the song switches up and goes quiet and tribal again as if Deacon’s raided Peter Gabriel‘s drum circle. The (indie) club kids are going to lose it over this one.
“Suprise Stefani” could pass as almost conventional, maybe not even out of place on a Postal Service record. “Wet Wings” opens with a sample of an old-timey spiritual (Hazel Dickens?). Maybe Deacon found the haunting tune at True Vine before melting the sample down and turning the whole thing into your Spring jam. The song archs upward into a cacophonous bliss, rocking steady with a lost Run-DMC beat, a marching band thump. All of it given the Joe Meek bells and whistles. “Slow Horns/Run For Your Life”—with its moving, staccato piano break—is a sweet surprise. Suddenly, there are no jokes.
This isn’t a man alone with his comic books and keyboards. If Deacon wants a movement, he’s gonna get one.