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Tom Barman's reassuring vocals tell wickedly insightful stories about murder, lust, undeserving friendships, lost loves, non-confomity and hope. It is a record that can, and does, mean many different things, to many different people.
Take the anthemic 'Everybodys Weird,' an infusion of jazz and funk whoose rhythm captures and emotes. There's 'Sister Dew' whoose instrumental ending swallows up the entire song. Then there's 'Instand Street,' whoose optimistic lyrics and word play reverse the songs meaning, half way through the song. Just when you think dEUS are a rock, maybe indie band with a tendency for loud all consuming music, a song like 'The Magic Hour,' an enchantingly slow piano ballad will come along and surprise you.
dEUS, have been labelled many things from being an art school band, to well...freaks. But despite the numerous categories confused music journalists keep dumping them in to, dEUS, always escape these labels and are never afraid to try something new.
This is a beautifully layered album, where you discover more with every listen. The lyrics are more reminiscent of poetry than a song. With thought provoking/ ambiguous slogans like 'Amplify your Soul,' which you just want to nick and whack on a t-shirt, if only to confuse London Underground commuters.
Above all, this is an infectious record full of emotions. Its not afraid to show the seedy, trashy, kinky side of life along with the alluring love and hope it wishes for. Its about showing life as it is, not what it pretend to be.
It's a good five years since dEUS started confusing the world with their violin-laced guitar sounds and, great though the previous two albums are, it's here that they get it absolutely right for the first time. They have an unerring talent for building a sheer wall of sound - the 2½-minute instrumental ending to "Instant Street" being a case in point - then catching you off-guard with a sweet ballad and making you wonder exactly which planet you, or they, or both, are on. Even the occasional ventures into electronic sounds which dEUS try out here, on the title track and "Everybody's Weird", work rather well. Indeed, the only thing missing is the trademark two-minute weirdo filler tracks, but I can't say I noticed their absence too much.
It has a complexity way beyong your average pop/rock record, with a sort of fusion jazzy feel to it, but it has a firm base in good, solid pop/rock song writing, and never descends into quirkiness for quirkiness' sake, where some previous albums have failed.
It's done the rounds with friends and gone over a storm, and dEUS are fantastic live too, masses of energy. They're real musicians and the live set, like the album, gushes with the Singer's evocative charimsa.
Deus are (to my knowledge) largely ignored/unkown outside of europe (the british music press found out they weren't from here or america and that was the end of it) and its an amazing shame. to me their music isn't so far off the popular mainstream rock, just much better. the difference is that this belgium band are brave enough to experiment and to try new things, and on this album, to refine their sound. the melody has always been there on all the albums, and if you like weirder music then your better off starting with in a bar under the sea or my sister = my clock.
This album is deus do pop, and they do it brilliantly. its the most straightforward album they've done, beautifully bitter and literate lyrics and haunting tunes throughout. this album seems like a more deliberate attempt to get closer to commmercial viability and it does exactly that, taking their odd noises and eccentricities and moulding them into perfect accesible songs like 'instant street' and 'the magic hour'. there's even deus do dance on 'everybody's weird'.
This is my favourite album i've ever heard for what its worth and with a few listens it should come pretty high up on your list. To those who like this, their talent stretches to other great bands like zita swoon, magnus, moondog jr and kiss my jazz.