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Destroyer

Dan Bejar started Destroyer as a solo project in Vancouver in 1995. His first album, We'll Build Them a Golden Bridge, was an electric folk record, setting the stage for the early Bowie comparisons that were certain to follow his particular vocal style. In 1998, Bejar added a rhythm section and took it into the studio for the first time. The resulting recording, City of Daughters, is a sparsely produced collection of catchy pop songs in which Bejar's increasingly obtuse lyrics really start to stand out. Thief, again recorded in Vancouver, was released in 2000, but by then the lineup had expanded into a quintet. The sparse production and the Bowie comparisons remained, but Bejar's cryptic lyrics and unique voice gave this rant against the music industry an original quality missing from many of that year's releases. The following year would see Destroyer's fourth album, Streethawk: A Seduction. Streethawk begins right where Thief leaves off. The production and the sound remain solid, but the lyrics have become even more obtuse, stuck somewhere between literacy and nonsense. This Night was the next release, an oblique and melodic album that portrayed Bejar as a ranting, depressed singer.

Destroyer has not been the only vehicle for Bejar's talents -- he is also one of the songwriters (along with Carl Newman of Zumpano) responsible for the much-acclaimed New Pornographers' Mass Romantic (Mint Records). This Night, which appeared in fall 2002, marked his first for Merge. His quirkiest material to date was captured on 2004's Your Blues. In 2005 Bejar collaborated with touring partners Frog Eyes on Notorious Lightning and Other Works, a six-track EP containing re-recorded versions of material from Your Blues with Frog Eyes as the backing band. He also contributed three songs to the New Pornographers' critically acclaimed Twin Cinema and spent the better part of that year on tour with the Canadian supergroup. February 2006 saw the release of Destroyer's Rubies, a return to the guitar-based sound of This Night with a touch of Streethawk-era drama. After devoting some more time to the New Pornographers, Swan Lake, and a collaboration with visual artist Sydney Vermont called Hello, Blue Roses, he returned to the sanctuary of his solo project, and released his eighth record, Trouble in Dreams, in March of 2008. The following year saw the release of Swan Lake's second outing, Enemy Mine, as well as the ambient Bay of Pigs EP (Destroyer). He contributed three tracks to the New Pornographers' fifth studio album, 2010's Together, before releasing 2011's Kaputt, his ninth LP under the Destroyer moniker and first to appear on the Billboard 200. In 2013, Bejar issued the Five Spanish Songs EP, which featured material written by Spanish musician Antonio Luque of the band Sr. Chinarro. The following summer brought the well-received sixth New Pornographers record, Brill Bruisers, which included three Bejar-penned tunes. A second Hello, Blue Roses album appeared in February 2015 titled WZO, and Destroyer's strings- and horns-imbued, New York-themed epic, Poison Season, followed that summer. ~ Terrance Miles
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Poison Season

1. Times Square, Poison Season I

2. Dream Lover

3. Forces From Above

4. Hell Is An Open Door

5. The River

6. Girl In A Sling

7. Times Square

8. Archer On The Beach

9. Midnight Meet The Rain

10. Solace's Bride

11. Bangkok

12. Sun In The Sky

13. Times Square, Poison Season II

x

Track List: Five Spanish Songs

1. Maria De Las Nieves

2. Del Monton

3. El Rito

4. Babieca

5. Bye Bye

x

Track List: Kaputt

1. Chinatown

2. Blue Eyes

3. Savage Night At The Opera

4. Suicide Demo For Kara Walker

5. Poor In Love

6. Kaputt

7. Downtown

8. Song For America

9. Bay Of Pigs (Detail)

x

Track List: Trouble In Dreams

1. Blue Flower / Blue Flame

2. Dark Leaves Form A Thread

3. The State

4. Foam Hands

5. My Favorite Year

6. Shooting Rockets From The Desk Of Night's Ape)

7. Introducing Angels

8. Rivers

9. Leopard Of Honor

10. Plaza Trinidad

11. Libby's First Sunrise

x

Track List: Rubies

1. Rubies

2. Your Blood

3. European Oils

4. Painter In Your Pocket

5. Looters' Follies

6. 3000 Flowers

7. A Dangerous Woman Up To A Point

8. Priest's Knees

9. Watercolours Into The Ocean

10. Sick Priest Learns To Last Forever

x

Track List: Notorious Lightning And Other Works

1. Notorious Lightning

2. New Ways Of Living

3. The Music Lovers

4. An Actor's Revenge

5. Don't Become The Thing You Hated

6. Your Blues

x

Track List: Your Blues

1. Notorious Lightning (2004)

2. It's Gonna Take An Airplane (2004)

3. An Actor's Revenge (2004)

4. The Music Lovers (2004)

5. From Oakland To Warsaw (2004)

6. Your Blues (2004)

7. New Ways Of Living (2004)

8. Don't Become The Thing You Hated (2004)

9. Mad Foxes (2004)

10. The Fox And The Hound (2004)

11. What Roadv

12. Certain Things You Ought To Know (2004)

x

Track List: This Night

1. This Night

2. Holly Going Lightly

3. Here Comes The Night

4. The Chosen Few

5. Makin' Angels

6. Hey, Snow White

7. Modern Painters

8. Crystal Country

9. Trembling Peacock

10. I Have Seen A Light

11. Students Carve Hearts Out Of Coal

12. Goddess Of Drought

13. Self Portrait With Thing (Tonight Is Not Your Night)

14. The Relevant Ballads

15. The Night Moves

x

Track List: Streethawk: A Seduction

1. Streethawk I

2. The Bad Arts

3. Beggars Might Ride

4. The Sublimation Hour

5. English Music

6. Virgin With A Memory

7. The Very Modern Dance

8. The Crossover

9. Helena

10. Farrar, Straus & Giroux (Sea Of Tears)

11. Strike

12. Streethawk II

x

Track List: Thief

1. Destroyer's The Temple

2. To The Heart Of The Sun On The Back Of The Vulture, I'll Go

3. The Way Of Perpetual Road

4. Canadian Lover / Falcon's Escape

5. City Of Daughters

6. Every Christmas

7. Mercy (We Had The Right)

8. Queen Of Languages

9. I.H.O.J.

10. In Dreams

11. Death On The Festival Circuit

12. M.E.R.C.I.

13. Thief

x

Track List: City Of Daughters

1. Comments On The World As Will

2. No Cease Fires! (Crimes Against The State Of Our Love, Baby)

3. Dark Purposes

4. Emax I

5. I Want This Cyclops

6. Loves Of A Gnostic

7. Emax II

8. State Of The Union

9. School, And The Girls Who Go There

10. The Space Race

11. Melanie And Jennifer And Melanie

12. War On Jazz II Or How I Learned To Love The War On Jazz

13. Emax III

14. You Were So Cruel

15. Signs

16. Rereading The Marble Faun

17. Son Of The Earth

x

Track List: We'll Build Them A Golden Bridge

1. Revolution

2. J. Tailor

3. Smith

4. I, As McCarthy

5. Mending Song

6. Leave Little Fiddler

7. The Pornographers

8. War On Jazz

9. Islands In The Stream

10. Saddestroyer

11. Streets Of Fire

12. Rose Fleched This

13. Breakin' The Law

14. Whistlin' Dixie

15. Riota

16. Knowing When To Leave

x

Track List: Archer On The Beach (Single)

1. Archer On The Beach

2. Grief Point

x

Track List: Bay Of Pigs EP

1. Bay Of Pigs

2. Ravers

x

Track List: Brain Scorcher EP

1. Brain Scorcher

2. Stonecrusher

3. Scared Of Sleep

4. No Mercy No Regrets

x

Track List: Dream Lover (Single)

1. Dream Lover

x

Track List: Girl In A Sling (Single)

1. Girl In A Sling

x

Track List: Ideas For Songs

1. A Month In The Country

2. Song About Disappointment

3. Spring Cleaning

4. No One Needs To Know

5. Death To The Northern Man

6. Child Of Styx

7. Marrying The Hammer

8. Nothing Against You Bored Spectre

9. Song About A Girl Up To A Point

10. The Terror Serves A Purpose

11. Leaving London

12. Untitled

13. Forget America

14. Stuffed And Sick

15. The Leg We Stand On

16. Why Banacek Doesn't Love

x

Track List: Times Square (Single)

1. Times Square

Comments

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Really annoying. Thumbs down
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Snow white, it's gonna be alright, gonna be alright
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First thought in my mind upon hearing his voice: 'Sounds like Bowie!'
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decadas inolvidables
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Best album of the decade.
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goraska4
I can not believe that you referred to Bowie as the 'Elf King'.
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james.minarc k
Reminds me of Al stewart(year of the cat) cool.......
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It's funny, I've heard Bowie only as the Elf King in "Labyrinth", but my girlfriend immediately compared Destroyer to him when I first played them for her. Now she's addicted like me and her Bowie records are still collecting dust.
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rwitman21
Whoever heard this guy & thought, David Bowie!, obviously had never (to paraphrase the old joke about women's shoes) never actually heard Bowie, but only had him described to them. Marc Bolan & Al Stewart's lovechild, maybe, but...Bowie?
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Oddly ....I can't look away....kind a like a train wreck! Hmmmm...(i think i like it)
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eww
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What's up Marc Bolan?
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this guy is good
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For reals... where's the love for Rubies?!?!
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so criminally underrated it is disgusting. The "Destroyer's Rubies" album is a modern masterpiece! Dan Bejar is amazing!
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Swan Lake wakes my tired heart.
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I love the way this guys sounds. I saw him with the New Pornographer s in Boise a few months back and Myriad Harbor hooked me on this guy :D
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How do I stop it???
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I don`t like this at all.
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aaellis
Check out Goddess of Drought. Very good!

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