Review – Poison Season

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Poison Season




Nicholas Friesen @Nicholastronaut January 18, 2016

Is this the new Bruce Springsteen? Wait, why is the Boss so nasally? Oh good, it’s Dan Bejar! I was worried for a second. Yeah, “Dream Lover” is a far cry from the meandering saxophone that all the damn kids fell in love with on 2011’s Kaputt, but “Girl in a Sling” takes us back there quick. Though Bejar is never one to repeat himself, he kind of takes a stab at a greatest hits-style collection here, with epic soundscapes (“Archer on the Beach”) and the piano-laden trysts of “Bangkok” and “Sun in the Sky.” No matter the instrumentation, it’s always his one-of-a-kind voice and delivery of those self-deprecating lyrics that gets you. Going as far back as 1996’s ultra lo-fi We’ll Build Them a Golden Bridge to his work with the New Pornographers, Swan Lake and his partner Sydney Hermant in Hello, Blue Roses, you’ll find that voice, the one your old girlfriend/boyfriend hated (but your secret crush was totally into) delivering such lines as “Forces from above deny you the right to be free in your own way” over strings and electronic blips. Yeah, it’s weird, but it’s about as challenging as pop music gets, and that’s alright.