Blitzen Trapper: Destroyer Of The Void

Blitzen Trapper: Destroyer Of The Void

B+

Blitzen Trapper

Album: Destroyer Of The Void
Label: Sub Pop

Long gone is the Blitzen Trapper of 2007’s Wild Mountain Nation, an album on which too many ideas vied for too little space, and bratty Beck-isms and Sparklehorse synths jostled against delectable hooks that crunched like rock candy. Destroyer Of The Void finds the band further refining the indie Americana and ’70s classic rock of 2008’s Furr, sanding down that album’s pointier edges and using pristine vocal harmonies as cotton batting between proggy flourishes and bits of Queen bombast. The results are by turns soporific and sublime; the one-two punch of the title track and “Laughing Lover,” with their lush, multi-part complexity and insistent guitars, set the bar a little high for the understated excursions to come, like the folky “The Man Who Would Speak True” and the perfunctory “Sadie.” But though the band is working from a smaller sonic palette, the lyrics are often mythical in scope, as Eric Earley continues to develop into a world-class yarn-spinner, teaming up with Alela Diane on the Dylan-esque duet “The Tree,” or scaling verbal mountain ranges over a cockamamie piano on “Lover Leave Me Drowning.” Void is an album by a band that’s mature enough to know what it wants and to focus its sound, but there’s a restlessness to these tracks that indicates it won’t be long before Blitzen Trapper strikes out for new territory.

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