by / March 27th, 2009 /

Dan Deacon – Bromst

 3/5 Rating

(Car Park Records)

Fittingly for a man with a name worthy of a superhero alter ego, the majority of Dan Deacon’s often brilliant but ultimately frustrating Bromst has the frenetic energy of Batman kicking seven shades of shit out of hired goons. An energy-sapping experience; when Bromst lets the tempo run a little smoother for a few seconds you can be sure that bone-crunching looped vocals and all manner of pacemaker-destroying crescendo are only moments away. Half the time you feel like you’re getting your face punched in. The other half leaving you marvelling at the guy’s frankly superb ear for melody within the madness.

Who would have thought a synth geek would wanna dance this bloody fast anyway? ‘Indeed, somewhere on this earth there’s a neurological study that could definitely do with the relentless stimuli on offer here as Deacon’s broad approach of squeezing every warped bassline and drum beat out of a tune as is humanly possible results in (a) euphoria or (b) motion sickness.

The gargantuan -Paddling Ghost’ bounces our heads around with some xylophone of all things; -Of the Mountains’ ends up sounding like a somehow wonderful bastard child arrived as result of a back alley shag between Dario G and the Afro Celt Soundsystem. Taken as a whole the album is, in short, barking.

To top it all off, on the penultimate track the fucking Chipmunks turn up. Well not really, but Deacon’s reluctance to let a voice be heard loud and clear is signified by the use of that -classic’ effect, as it is by heavy, if generally enjoyable, distortion elsewhere. Amongst the adrenalin though there is a huge amount to get excited about still – the chopped up vigour of -Surprise Stefani’ for one, the exhilarating final minutes of -Slow with Horns/Run for Your Life’ and plenty more besides as well. Difficult to digest all at once perhaps, but most will find plenty to like before the hour-plus running time shudders to a halt on the excellent -Get Older’.

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