Destroyer – Kaputt
It would be easy to dismiss Kaputt as all surface, no feeling on first listen. Dan Bejar’s tenth album as Destroyer appropriates a side of eighties’ pop yet to be regurgitated in today’s nostalgia-heavy charts – for good reason, grumps might grumble: a sax and synth, fretless bass, lounge-funk plastic soul that makes good on promises of Avalon-era Roxy Music and Sade influences.
Consequently, listeners might initially slide between its smooth grooves into a pit of cheese – but steady yourself, because Kaputt deserves perseverance. Bejar’s celebrated rapier phrasing is present and correct, studding the album’s exterior polish with wit and grit (“you terrify the land/ you are pestle and mortar” is one heck of an opening couplet). But finale Bay of Pigs is the towering highlight, as impressive in its (slightly) truncated form as in its previous, lengthier guise; a disco-opus that underscores the songwriting power that Bejar is steadily becoming. [Chris Buckle]