by / February 4th, 2011 /

Twilight Singers – Dynamite Steps

 3/5 Rating

(Sub Pop)

“Consistently reliable” isn’t the most exciting musical appraisal, in fact it sounds a bit like a character assassination, up there with ‘harmless’ and ‘nice’. But for the once side-project now full-time Twilight Singers their four albums prior to Dynamite Steps have been exactly that.

If you’re familiar with the work of Greg Dulli, you know what to expect at this point. This time around his band of collaborators include ex-Verve man Nick McCabe, Petra Haden and Mark Lanegan, but make no mistake the ex-Afghan Whigs ringleader is still very much holding the reins. Even if he does sound a tiny bit off on the opener, (‘Last Night In Town’ is the only bum note that should’ve been resigned to B-side) Dulli is on top form, flexing his vocal chords from crooning to falsetto howling.

The most noteworthy tracks include the slowly entrancing ‘Get Lucky’, the Gutter Twins-esque ‘Be Invited’ and ‘Blackbird and the Fox’, featuring Ani DiFranco. Genres are toyed with and the subjects are often murky but there is always the promise of light at the end of the tunnel. Despite the title, Dynamite Steps isn’t loaded with surprises, it won’t explode its greatness in your face and, in a world of meat dress headlines and gimmicks, it does that rare thing of letting the music speak for itself. File under ‘grower’ and give it a chance to pull you in.

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