The Twilight Singers – Dynamite Steps
(Sub Pop, 2011)
This album, the fifth for Greg Dulli under The Twilight Singers moniker, has been on repeat for the past couple months. In fact, I have probably listened to this album more than any other this year. Again and again I come back to these dark songs of lies, regret, pain and suffering on Dynamite Steps, but I have never been able to recommend it because I don’t know what it is about this album that attracts my attention. I know there is something there, something buried in the darkness that is extremely satisfying, but it has always been something inexplicable…always just out of reach.
This past week has been rough. After traveling in Cambodia for two weeks, I came home and was immediately hit with a travel hangover. Reverse cultural shock. Or maybe just a case of extreme laziness. Whatever is was, I have never had such a hard time getting back into the swing of things. So many things to do, so many things to take care of. My brain would not shut down at night and the lack of sleep stretched the dreaded jet lag across days and sleepless nights.
I have been home 4 days tonight and the fog of reality is finally starting to burn off and I’m finally starting to see clearly again. It’s a bittersweet feeling. But with this clarity I have realized a parallel between The Twilight Singers newest album and that crazy country they call Cambodia. I realize that both are so welcoming…they invite you in and make you feel comfortable. But no matter how secure you might feel in the present, in the ‘right here and now’, you can’t help but feel the remnants of a revolting past. You can see the criminal element lurking in the shadows from the corner of your eye. The danger is stimulating and even sexy, but it is very real. This is what appeals to me about Dynamite Steps, it’s a journey into a place where you have to watch your back, but it’s worth the risk…it’s worth every minute of it.