Album Reviews

Gliss Riffer – Dan Deacon

Final Rating: 7/10

I saw Dan Deacon open for the Arcade Fire in August, and I was entirely nonplussed. It wasn’t what I expected, it wasn’t what I wanted, and I was completely baffled as to what the thought process was behind having him as a prelude to the Arcade Fire. He was goofy, and quirky, and a little bit embarrassing. You could see, clearly, that Dan Deacon was still trying to find himself musically and as a personality onstage. All the pieces just hadn’t fallen into place yet.

So, obviously, I wasn’t looking forward to this album. And then I was nonplussed again, because I liked it. 

Gliss Riffer is quirky and eccentric and it’s definitely the Dan Deacon we’ve come to know from his previous work through the last handful of years, but the electro-buzz beats and Dan Deacon’s vocals – he does the female ones too – combine to wicked effect. There’s a lot of pop influence on there, and it’s also pretty reminiscent to me of Gary Numan and The Human League. The difference, to me, is how well it all works. When I saw Dan Deacon, he was just a guy standing in front of a keyboard in sweatpants and a hoodie, who sort of bounced around a little bit and maybe hit a few buttons and made a couple of sounds. There was no cohesive image, or audible direction. On Gliss Riffer, there definitely is. Dan Deacon’s found it now – whatever ‘it’ is –  and it’s impressive.

‘Feel The Lightning’ is a standout track, but the album is fun all the way through. Gliss Riffer drops February 24th, check it out.

About author

Dylan is a writer from Toronto who enjoys rock and roll and comic books, and who is currently working on his debut graphic novel, The Star Child. You can catch him on Twitter @dylthewriter.