Powder Burns – Albuquerque Tribune

Albuquerque Tribune

The Twilight Singers is former Afghan Whigs frontman Greg Dulli’s latest project, and this is his fourth album under the moniker. Dulli explores the dark underbelly of love on such tunes as “Bonnie Brae,” where falling in love is all about the rapture, the situation, that moment of emotion, but this being Dulli you know it never ends well.

“Forty Dollars” is a dystopian take on the Beatles – where “Love is for sale” and “All you need is love” and “She loves you yeah-yeah-yeah” – but deep down you know she really doesn’t mean it.

Swirling violins and cello help create a mood throughout, while indie icon Ani Difranco lends her voice on a few songs (“Bonnie Brae,” “Candy Cane Crawl” and “Powder Burns”). There’s an underlying soulfulness, befitting Dulli’s Motown sensibilities (“My Time (Has Come)”), while multitracked, echoey vocals propel the indie pop rocker “I’m Ready.”

There’s a breakthrough of sorts on “Underneath The Waves,” where he proclaims: “I become alive.” That sentiment is echoed on “There’s Been An Accident,” where, with equal measure of elation and dread, Dulli sings: “I’m alive/It kinda took me by surprise.”

It seems the poet of dark spaces and even darker living sees the light, putting his demons – sex, drugs and rock n’ roll – to rest, finally. And on the title track he gains a bit of redemption.

Dulli is able to pack more emotion and feeling into three minutes-plus than some people will ever experience in a lifetime. In the bio, he says that during the recording process he sobered up after seven years of a drug/alcohol-induced haze, and the mesmerizing results are grandly and ultimately uplifting.

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