Pruning next month’s concert calendar for the not-to-be-missed
Sandro Perri has come a long way from the ambient electronica he was producing in the early 2000s as Polmo Polpo. Whereas the Canadian producer’s early material was characterized by white noise, minimalist beats and seal-like drones, with occasional sojourns into House jamming, his 2011 album, Impossible Spaces, finds the artist in much more tangible, even somewhat folksy, territory.
The seven songs on Impossible Spaces are ambulant and meandering. Subtle but solid rhythms evolve at an unhurried pace. Though certainly no longer minimal, the songs are still by no means densely packed. Perri’s delicate, soulful voice has ample room to splay and twirl amidst one-off flourishes of flute, guitar and synthesizer swells. Comparable to an Arthur Russell or a less chilly James Blake, this musician has found a niche that fits him beautifully.
Also from Vancouver, Destroyer is the primary musical outlet for enigmatic and crazily prolific poet/musician Dan Bejar. Though perhaps better known for his contributions to Canadian pop supergroup The New Pornographers, Bejar has produced a solid nine Destroyer albums over the last 15 years.
The most recent, Kaputt, made waves in the indie music community last year with its esoteric array of pop styles (“Blue Eyes,” “Chinatown“), disco (“Suicide Demo for Kara Walker“), elevator jazz and cryptically poetic lyricism.
“Four white pillars, Yankee-style; all of America lives to lights his pipes; all of America live to light his pipe at night; to which Dixie responds, “Freeeeee!” sings Bejar on “Suicide Demo,” sounding something like an epically stoned David Bowie.
Breathily voiced kernels of impressionistic, subject-verb disagreeing stream of consciousness like this one glaze the album in a remarkably consistent overarching mood – one that suggests a world seen through a dreamy opium haze. As complex as it is soft around the edges, Destroyer’s music should make for an evening of sustained twilight. “Wasting your days; chasing some girls; alright, chasing cocaine,” sings Bejar in “Kaputt,” “through the backrooms of the world; all night.”