Dan Deacon albums

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2012

America –  (4.5 / 5)

         Dan Deacon’s brand of rock music will probably never be popular. It’s too calculated, professional, and quite honestly, too old fashioned. But that doesn’t make it any less relevant or necessary to our culture. Even though he gets the most out of overdubs and keyboard effects, kind of music harks back to early 20th century classical composers that made suites instead of short rock songs. The first three tracks on the album work pretty well and are similar to what Deacon achieved on his last record, “True Thrush” and “Lots” especially bring great use to backwards and pitch shifting vocals, but it’s nothing we haven’t heard before.

         The main part of this album that works is the last half, titled simply “USA”. It all plays like one long song: “Is a Monster” paints an epic backdrop of sounds first by using a horn section that quickly resolves into a valley of synthesizers and sound effects; “The Great American Desert” has an almost tribal and native American type elegance, as the voices hum and howl over the drums and synth-orchestra; “Rail” paints images harking back to the trans-continental railroad and has marimbas and xylophones that play to the effects of rain drops; “Manifest” sums up the USA suite in a parade of noisy electronic lightening bolts and other-worldly chanting. America is super ambitious and is like nothing else out there, as is all Dan Deacon music, but should be heard if you are thinking seriously about what is possible in music. 

Best Tracks: USA, Lots