Review of Rise Above Album by The Dirty Projectors

The Dirty Projectors
Rise Above
Album Review

The Dirty Projectors are essentially one man, Dave Longstreth, and a revolving door of backing musicians. This album sees Longstreth further his deconstructive take on rock music, and will be an exciting prospect for anyone who enjoys bands like Deerhoof or even Yankee Hotel Foxtrot era Wilco.

Rise Above is not an album for those who prefer straight forward, conventional pop. The ten tracks on this album are as freewheeling and experimental as any you're likely to hear. Each one is full of unexpected musical left turns, and sudden bursts of noise coming from nowhere.

What is particularly impressive is the deployment of 60s girl group style backing vocalists, to create often unsettling atmospheres. Many tracks, particularly 'No More' are warped and twisted takes on that most dependable of genres, with Longstreth's own incomprehensible vocals undulating over woozy non-harmonies, leaving you to wonder whether you are actually listening to the sound of what goes on inside Phil Spector's brain.

The Dirty Projectors Rise Above Album

This scattershot approach is without doubt an acquired taste, and it can begin to grate by the end, but stick with it and it will grow on you like a post-rock rash.
Ben Davis

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