The Destroyers - Hole in the Universe
Vocalist Paul Murphy may intone about various holes in the universe, but thanks to the sophomore effort from Birmingham’s fifteen piece The Destroyers, if there was ever a hole in carnival drenched, gypsy Balkan folk, there isn’t now. Hole in the Universe is a pandemonium of the weird and wonderful; a pandemonium of hypnotic story tellers, mischievous mad hatters, and political scallies. The scallies may give this album an air of political righteousness, but if you are at all deterred by music with this outlook, don’t cut your read short just yet. This album is mysteriously alluring, an assortment of additive instrumentals and spellbinding tales – all in the name of fun.
‘Sisyphus’ is the dark tale of laborious work and dictatorship. It has anxious, murky brass sections and an on-going heave-ho chant of “work”. The curious instrumental ‘Rasputin’s Revenge’ is a seamless blend of Balkan folk and ska tones, think Balkan Beat Box colliding with The Specials. ‘Clown Slayer’ is another of the album’s instrumentals, a fast tempo circus song with a tuba plodding its way around the circus ring. Hole in the Universe closes rather dramatically with ‘On the Moon,’ a song which has a musical, sing-a-long theatre feel to it, conjuring images of all fifteen band members linked by the arm, swaying, singing with potency, and ending with a definitive bow. Reaching this final bow will mean you’ve heard the politics of ‘Red Tape,’ a story from the perspective of jockey ‘Diamond Jones,’ and other marvels. If you’re a fan of Orkestra del Sol or Gogol Bordello, The Destroyers will certainly fill that hole in your record collection.