New Destroyer – “Bay Of Pigs” (Stereogum Premiere)

brandon | August 4, 2009 - 3:08 pm

“Epic” gets thrown a lot, but when hearing something like Destroyer’s “Bay Of Pigs,” I feel the need to go back in time and choose my words differently. The almost 14-minute “ambient disco” track takes up the entire Side A of Dan Bejar’s forthcoming limited-edition Bay Of Pigs EP. Ostensibly it tackles the 1961 invasion of Cuba of the same name, but like most of Bejar’s work, there are dozens of threads (and amazing lines delivered with tossed-off cool) running through it. For instance, “Magnolia’s a girl, her heart’s made of wood / as apocalypses go that’s pretty good — sha la la — wouldn’t you say?” And: “Love is a political beast with jaws for a mouth, / I don’t care.” We’re told to remove our spurs and our antlers, reminded that the tide comes in and the tide goes away (all the time), and learn about a vomitous walk in an English Garden, a girl named Christine who throws our narrator into rages, a guy who was born in the South with a father from the North, etc. Bejar presents the details over a mostly electro backdrop, complete with strums and layered voices. Sit down and really listen to this one. It’s his Savage Detectives, or something.

The Bay Of Pigs EP is out 8/18 via Merge. It’s being printed in a limited edition of 1,000 (and will come with a digital download code). Side B is “Ravers,” which was played completely on analog synthesizer. And, as Merge puts it:

It explores some of the more meditative realms of 20th Century classical composition. The song itself is a casual rumination on parties, political parties, madness and suffering (for one’s art).

Maybe you can ask Dan about it at one of these live outings:

07/29 – Philadelphia, PA @ First Unitarian Church
07/30 – New York, NY @ Bowery Ballroom
07/31 – Boston, MA @ Paradise
08/02 – Sackville, NB @ Sackville United Church
10/02 – Montreal, QC @ Ukrainian Federation
10/03 – Toronto, ON @ Horseshoe Tavern

The lyrics, so you can sing along:

Listen, I’ve been drinking, as our house lies in ruin. I don’t know what I’m doing: alone, in the dark, at the park or at the pier, watching ships disappear in the rain.

1) The world’s just bones. The world is black stones dressed up in the rain with no place to go but home, just like Nancy! On a night like this, why, she’s pro stars! pro sky!

2) All lit up and sick of fighting beneath the diseased lighting of the discotheque at night, it don’t mean a thing, it never means a thing, it don’t meant, it never means a thing. It’s got that swing…

3) I’ve seen it all … I’ve seen it all. Magnolia’s a girl. Her heart’s made of wood. As apocalypses go that’s pretty good, wouldn’t you say? Sha la la…

4) Please remove your spurs. Come to think of it, remove your antlers. Haven’t seen you
for ages. I still fly into rages at the mention of your name: Christine White! I think about you often, off in the desert, laughing your head off in the forests of the night. Say a prayer for the light…

5) So now I live well. I live in the mine. I’m still slinging mud at the towers all the time. I took a walk … And threw up in an English garden…

6) I was born in the north, but my father’s from the south. Love is a political beast with jaws for a mouth, I don’t care. You’re upset and have every right to be. Regretfully you decline. Every night was a waste of time. Every night, Every night, Every night…

7) You were on the side of good. I was inside of the sea’s guts: a crumbling beauty trapped in a river of ice. A crumbling beauty trapped in paradise. Oh, it was paradise.

8) The tide comes in and the tide goes out again. I suppose this is the kind of thing we see every day. The tide comes in; the tide goes away. Oh the tide comes in, yeah the tide! Yes, the tide…

9) A ransom note written on the night sky above remind’s me what, in particular, about this wine I love. Like a punctured beast better off dead, compliments going to my head… la da da la da da!

10) And speaking of my mind, the sunflower. And speaking of a world turning sour on you. I was 20 years old in 1992. I was bathed in golden sunlight, alright!!

11) I was ripped on dope, you were a ray of sunshine. I was a hopeless romantic, you were swine. You got to spend money to make money. You got to stop calling me “honey”…

12) Oh world!, you fucking explosion that turns us around. The searchlight slumps over, it’s so sick of the night and the kids on the boats, busted in the shipyard, going down down down down down down down…

13) You travel light, all night ,every night, to arrive at the conclusion of the world’s inutterable secret … And you shut your mouth…

Free and easy, gentle, gentle … The wind through the trees makes you mental for me … Nancy, in a state of crisis, on a cloud…

Tags: Destroyer
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