I’m over the moon for this record. I’m a frothing Dirty Beaches fan, and that biases my opinion a little, but there is a lot to love on this album. Alex Hungtai, AKA Dirty Beaches has let his guard down a little, and we’re seeing new sides of him and his mysterious persona. Coming off of 2011′s amazing full-length Badlands and some extensive touring, Dirty Beaches has clearly learned a thing or two, and he’s brought it to this new record.
Spanning 16 tracks over two discs, the album is a lot to digest, but that’s completely fine by me. Beginning in familiar territory off-the-bat with “Night Walk,” the first disc hits an apex with the 9-minute odyssey that is “Mirage Hall.” Love is the Devil is mostly instrumental, and sounds like it would/will make for a great film score. The entire album (both discs) is haunting and comforting at the same time, the ambience of the instrumentals is familiar, taking me back to the days when Godspeed! You Black Emperor first blew my mind with their epic soundscapes in my freshman year of university.
Alex described some emotional moments while recording elements of the album and it really shines through. It’s at once impactful and subdued, an album that might fade in to the background for a few tracks, before silently sneaking up and giving the listener a musical punch in the gut.
Fresh off of the release of a 23-song record, Montreal’s johnny_ripper has turned to remixing, with a compilation of such efforts to be released sometime in the near future. He takes this ethereal Heidi Harris song to another level by adding a snappy drumbeat apparently made by snapping branches and hitting glass.