Sunday, March 26, 2006

Dan the Destroyer is the New Dylan

His voice is too weird, his music too glittering-strange a species of rambling glam-folk for mass consumption. Bejar is a queer duck and a critic’s darling, and queer duck and critic’s darling he’s likely to remain.

That’s too bad, because that seventh album, Destroyer’s Rubies, is not only his best by far, it’s also a bona fide masterpiece of opaque genius bullshit—overblown, overwrought, and all the better for it. It’s Bejar’s rare gift to be able to spring beautiful lyrical booby traps, startling non sequiturs that somehow perfectly set off all the instrumental glitz surrounding them, mined from such diverse influences as Ziggy Stardust/Aladdin Sane–era David Bowie, Neil Young, French pop, mellow West Coast rock circa 1972 or so, and, of course, Dylan himself, acoustic and electric versions.


It’s genius; it’s bullshit—which means that some heedless music critic will inevitably dub Bejar the new Dylan and end up looking like an idiot. Well, Bejar is the new Dylan, and I’m that idiot.

From Sense You Been Gone, in Friday's Washington City Paper.

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