Greg Dulli’s reputation precedes him if not anything else. The following he gained through the Afghan Whigs was phenomenal and when that project was abandoned he always had the Twilight Singers to fall back on. Now 5 albums in and with a host of world tours and a triumphant showing at Glastonbury under their belt, the band have released ‘Dynamite Steps’.
It’s been 5 years since the release of the critically acclaimed ‘Powder Burns’, and ‘Dynamite Steps’ doesn’t just look to build on the fiercely emotional concepts detailed in the record. Instead, it looks to completely change them. Dulli enlisted his old friend Mark Lanegan for this album along with Joseph Arthur and Petra Haden providing support. Ani DiFranco and the Verve’s Nick McCabe also feature prominently in this record.
‘Dynamite Steps’ is nothing that you would not expect of Greg Dulli’s work, as you would expect the underlying themes of loss, remorse and mortality is apparent throughout. But there really is nobody who portrays morbidity better than Greg Dulli and here lies the attraction to the record. Ballad ‘She was Stolen’ is a close as Dulli can get to romance in this effort, and while it may seem strained at first, it does evolve into something quite sonically palatable. ‘On The Corner’ explores the darker romanticist in Dulli and is a clear indication that he has moved on from the parodies of his earlier efforts. ‘Last Night in Town’ is a perfect opener to this album though and sets the scene as expected with a mix of Dulli’s morbid vocals and a casual, yet piercing guitar riff.
The faults though for this album are abundant, and it falls victim of being one of those records which just isn’t that interesting on a second listen. At times it is difficult to differentiate one track from another and the final two tracks of the record might as well just be ignored. So with that it’s difficult to pronounce this album a success. The record explores concepts which Dulli has grown all too familiar with and from my estimations has worn out already.
‘Dynamite Steps’ is available now. You can download the track ‘Don’t Call’ by the Twilight Singers below.