Albums to watch

ken

Destroyer

ken

Album number eleven from the Canadian indie rock band fronted by New Pornographers member Dan Bejar

ADM rating[?]

7.4

Label
Dead Oceans
UK Release date
20/10/2017
US Release date
20/10/2017
  1. 10.0 |   The Independent

    Never one to stick to the same musical path, Bejar has abandoned the poised string arrangements and rolling jazz horns that backdropped his tales of the city on 2015’s Poison Season, mostly in favour of a grim electropop
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  2. 8.8 |   Gig Soup

    Regardless of one’s first-take evaluations of ‘ken’, repetition will inevitably draw listeners closer to this underrated gem
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  3. 8.5 |   The Line Of Best Fit

    ken is Bejar’s best work since his masterpiece
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  4. 8.0 |   All Music

    His typical existential outlook combined with a heavier presence of New Order-like industrial timbres make this a somewhat darker album, but still delightfully Destroyer
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  5. 8.0 |   Slant Magazine

    ken showcases the most commercially appealing elements of Destroyer frontman Dan Bejar’s oeuvre
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  6. 8.0 |   Exclaim

    With ken, he has once again delivered an excellent record that offers both sonic surprises and familiar idiosyncrasies
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  7. 8.0 |   The Guardian

    Ken isn’t quite as cohesive as 2011’s outstanding breakthrough, Kaputt, but makes another fine addition to the canon
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  8. 8.0 |   DIY

    While ‘ken’ is more accessible than its predecessor it seems unlikely to affect the Vancouver musician’s cult name status
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  9. 8.0 |   The FT

    Features surreal lyrics, eccentric singing and wilfully unpredictable structures
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  10. 8.0 |   Drowned In Sound

    It’s not going to immediately colonise one’s affections in the way the best Destroyer records do, but it will slowly get there
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  11. 8.0 |   The 405

    Bejar is never one to fully sprawl across his laurels, always seeking to challenge himself just enough to keep his work fresh
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  12. 8.0 |   The Quietus

    While Poison Season sounded like the kind of late-career ‘mature’ album that Bejar could be content to make for the rest of his life, ken shows that he is still full of the potential to surprise – and long may he continue to do so
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  13. 8.0 |   music OMH

    Comfortably surpassing Poison Season, ken is hugely listenable throughout, and with so many ‘80s touchpoints in evidence, it often sounds like it could actually have been made at that time
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  14. 7.9 |   Pitchfork

    He remains one of the most evocative songwriters of his generation
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  15. 7.5 |   Consequence Of Sound

    One of Destroyer’s most accessible albums
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  16. 7.5 |   Under The Radar

    This isn't much of a change of direction for Bejar; it's just Destroyer. What more can a person want?
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  17. 7.0 |   Loud And Quiet

    Rather irresistible
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  18. 6.0 |   The Observer

    Shot through with scorn
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  19. 6.0 |   Mojo

    There are some sumptuous moments. Print edition only

  20. 5.0 |   Tiny Mix Tapes

    The lyrics can’t support the music, and vice-versa
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  21. 5.0 |   Pretty Much Amazing

    Usually, when a reliable act like Destroyer puts out a disappointment, you hold out for the next one. This is the kind that makes you want to go back and listen to his older stuff, if only to remind you he’s capable of wonders
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  22. 5.0 |   God Is In The TV

    There are glimpses of what makes Bejar a talented songwriter and arranger, but these moments don’t outweigh the parts where he sounds uninspired. ken is one of the year’s biggest disappointments from someone capable of much more
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