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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 'forgot you were broken........my mistake' Incredible lyrics and vocals from Mr Dulli
So it has taken me a while to review this album.......... because I don't think that I can express just how good it is................
The Afghan Whigs drew my attention in the 90's with Greg Dulli's incredible emotion both lyrically and vocally, highlighted by what has continued to remain my favourite album of all time , 'Gentlemen'.
As the Whigs slid away into...
Published on 7 Aug 2011 by sanddrifting

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2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Musically diverse, vocally exhausting
Having bought this album on recommendation I would sum it up thusly: the musical scope and range therein is excellent. Every track is clearly distinct, and there are strong overtones of Joseph Arthur and Elliot Smith. A wide variety of instruments and a hell of a lot of thought have been used in the making of this album, and it really does show. However, while the music...
Published on 12 April 2011 by President Kang


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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 'forgot you were broken........my mistake' Incredible lyrics and vocals from Mr Dulli, 7 Aug 2011
By 
This review is from: Dynamite Steps (Audio CD)
So it has taken me a while to review this album.......... because I don't think that I can express just how good it is................
The Afghan Whigs drew my attention in the 90's with Greg Dulli's incredible emotion both lyrically and vocally, highlighted by what has continued to remain my favourite album of all time , 'Gentlemen'.
As the Whigs slid away into history and the Twilight Singers emerged I believed I would always feel deep down that the 'Singers would never fulfil me in the way that the Whigs did.
So Annie Mae was a great song , Blackberry Belle is a good album , She Loves you was a good idea , Powder Burns contains some superb tracks.......... and they are almost as great live........... Yes , that is the Twilight Singers............ but now....... here is Dynamite Steps.
Dynamite Steps does so much , it makes me feel the same as when I listen to Gentlemen. The reason being that all that Greg Dulli emotion in both the lyrics , and most importantly his vocals is back in force.
From the first track Last Night in Town, hauntingly , gently building up, ...'Whenever you're here you're alive...... it builds and builds , it lifts off , until it sinks you into the pain of ......'I promise to be with you till the end , or somewhere near there......' The paces slips back for Be Invited and slowly eases into Wave which then crushes you hard ........'muddy water ,broken glass' slightly distorted vocals ,full tempo, right through ,drums , guitar, alive!!!
Then it all eases back again , Get Lucky, piano, violin before presenting us with On The Corner.
The tempo slips away for Gunshots and She Was Stolen then into Blackbird And The Fox. It's the emotion , that emotion, the lyrics , the vocals....
The Twilight Singers , like the Whigs before them , don't allow your interest in an album diminish by top loading it , and sure enough , next up are two of my favourite tracks , firstly Never Seen No Devil , as Dulli whispers ....'ain't no ordinary man gonna save me from that shotgun in your hand......then , just when it surely can get no better, The Beginning Of The End........'I do what I want to , I calculate'.....slipping towards that same nervous tingle felt from some of the tracks on Gentlemen (and baby you be sweet, be sweet ..................be sweet )
So the album closes with the title track which allows the saga to drift off in a similar vein to Gentlemen. ( oh , and I must emphasize that these 2 albums are not in the least bit similar!!) though it lifts towards the end as Dulli sings ....you'll never gonna feel like you felt last night.
Then , we start the album again , and again...
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Small Lights In A Deep Dark Place, 24 July 2011
By 
The Wolf (uk) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Dynamite Steps (Audio CD)
Even before we hear one note of music the album's artwork
gives every indication that we are not going to be in for
a comfortable ride. 'Dynamite Steps' is a walk in the dark.
Greg Dulli is a master of the shadows which lurk in dusty
corners and long forgotten places where the sun rarely shines.
Listen to him bare his soul on the doom-laden opening track
'Last Night In Town' to fully appreciate his disconsolate muse.

This is not to say that The Twilight Singers are incapable of
producing a little human warmth when they set their minds to it.
'Get Lucky', for example, is a piano-led ballad which communicates
poetry, pathos and a substantial dose of cautious optimism.
Mr Dulli's torn and fractured vocal performance is truly moving.

The grumbling, throbbing bass which leads us into 'Waves', however,
presages a composition so violent in its execution that we are left
in no doubt that this is a band who have a firm grasp on how to
release a dangerous dose of primal energy into the listening world.
(The spirit of 1980's Husker Du came to mind for more than a moment).

Elsewhere we are occasionally surprised. The delicate acoustic introduction
to 'Blackbird and The Fox' makes way for a melody and harmonic arrangement
which is as powerful as it is memorable. One of the album's highlights.
'Never Seen No Devil' comes a close second with its whistful bluegrass
guitar and Rich Nelson's brooding cello decorations. Marvelously moody stuff!

The final song, title track 'Dynamite Steps', brings the album to a
hard-driving, emotionally uplifting, yet strangely ambiguous conclusion.

Catch it while you can before it disappears over the horizon without a trace!

Recommended.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good, but..., 15 May 2011
By 
This review is from: Dynamite Steps (Audio CD)
I'm a fan of most things Greg Dulli has done, in particular his collaborations with Mark Lanegan and, of course, Powder Burns (more of which in a moment). Dynamite Steps has it's moments, soaring melodies, absorbing lyrics and some pretty cool electronica, Last Night in Town. On the Corner and Never Seen No Devil stand comparison with the best he's done, which means pretty damn good. But, and there is a but, it just isn't as diverse, textured or consistent as Powder Burns, there is none of the wonky, catchy brilliance of Bonnie Bray or Forty Dollars, the passion of Powder Burns itself, or the splendor of I wish I was. That's a lot of 'nones', which shouldn't dissuade anyone from buying this album, which is good, it's just not brilliant. Powder Burns is one of my favourite albums of the 21st century, along with Soulsavers' Broken and Mark Lanegan's Bubblegum. In that august company Dynamite Steps falls short of greatness.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 2 Aug 2014
By 
Ian Birch "Ian Birch" (UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Dynamite Steps (Audio CD)
Some good tracks which I used to make a Greg Dulli compilation.
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dulli's masterwork., 16 Feb 2011
This review is from: Dynamite Steps (Audio CD)
I heard there was going to be a new twilight singers album several years ago. Since then, I would check and re-check, and absorb every single piece of info I could find. Speculating on collaborators, guessing lyrics based on song titles, cross-referencing previous albums, reading every interview with anyone involved I could find. After several years of this immense, unthinkable hype and build up, dynamite Steps was released. Somehow, Greg Dulli maganed to surpass my expectations.

Something the Twilight singers understand is how to make a fantastic album; sure, the songs are still phenominal on their own, but they're part of a larger arc, and are meant to be listened to as a set. What's really incredible is not that they accomplish this seamlessly here, but that they accomplish it when each song is so different from the other - dynamite Steps crosses genre's effortlessly. The album beings with the very "traditional" Twilight Singers-sounding opening track, and eventually progresses to the heaviest song of dulli's career (Waves), to sinister, sarcastic, catchy piano (Get Lucky), to Western-sounding arrangments (Never Seen No Devil) - literally every song sounds like it could come from a totally different album, which is why it's so astonishing they all work together.

However, the reason the flow works is not just that the songs work together as part of a larger story; but that they don't blend together when doing so. The songs never once feel samey, or like you're treading old ground. Each individual song stands out not just for painting a different picture and having memorable lyrics, but having a completely unique sound. Dulli approaches loss, obsession, denial, hopelessness and wonder, and at the end of the journey it's unclear whether he's learnt anything, but you know that journey has reached its conclusion. Each song the next logical step on the road to the title song of the album, Twilight Steps.

The Twilight Singers have always used their music and not just their lyrics to communicate, though. Take the heavy song meantioned earlier; waves. From the title (And the previous albums softer aluusions to waves) one would be forgiven for thinking this would be a more gentle song. However, Dulli personifies his struggle by having the guitar and drums be loud enough to drown out his words, even at his loudest. These are not calm, soothing waves; they are waves constructed for the purpose of drowning him out, of muffling him. On the contrary, Beginning of the End starts with (and contains a chorus of) the most warm, amazing, strange sounding whirring. It creates the most wonderous, safe and warm feeling, followed by the lyrics "I do what I want to - I calculate", implying Dulli's willingness and comfort in being the calculating, cruel lothario he is. This is, ironically, in contrast to a previous song "The Blackbird and the Fox", which seemed to be warning the listener of similar kinds of men.

The entire album feels like Dulli is chasing it; or more accurately, her. Each song a different method of trying to win someone, trying to claim someone. Yet, it's not really until the final song when we hear why. The previous songs where about coldly calculating capturing someone, or about obsession, or self-loathing for not being able to capture someone, or desperation. However, in the final song when we hear "Rain turns to fire, turns to embers... But there you were" it is nothing but cathartic. Dulli has used the word "love" before, but here (as with the song "I Wish I was" from his previous album) we learn what it means to a man like Dulli; saviour.

And when the ending of the song kicks in, "You Love Me", it has never felt more worked for.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars More of the same (fortunately), 30 Mar 2011
This review is from: Dynamite Steps (Audio CD)
Love him or hate him, Greg Dulli's ever expanding waistline doesn't seem to be adversly effecting the quality of his albums. Not quite as focussed as 'Powder Burns' and not quite as gifted as 'Blackberry Belle' but close enough to both to be a good album, it's worth it just for 'Lucky', 'Corner, and 'Gunshots'. For me, no-one hits that desparate, melancholy but 'still in there fighting' vibe like Dulli does. 'I feel cool, alive, aware that I'm sinking' from the man sums up the best of his work... and there's some more of it here. Only minor gripe is that the sound quality on the CD is distorted in places. anyone else had this problem?
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2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Musically diverse, vocally exhausting, 12 April 2011
By 
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This review is from: Dynamite Steps (Audio CD)
Having bought this album on recommendation I would sum it up thusly: the musical scope and range therein is excellent. Every track is clearly distinct, and there are strong overtones of Joseph Arthur and Elliot Smith. A wide variety of instruments and a hell of a lot of thought have been used in the making of this album, and it really does show. However, while the music is excellent, the vocals really let the album down, and I mean really. The lead singer is really not up to the job, and while this would be more forgiveable on a lesser effort, it's a pity that his poor vocals are married to what it otherwise an excellent cd. I suggest you give this a listen-poor vocals never hurt Bob Dylan's career, after all.
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Dynamite Steps
Dynamite Steps by The Twilight Singers
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