There aren’t many better ways to thwart audience expectations than how Destroyer does it on the just-released “Dream Lover,” the first single from the first Destroyer album since Kaputt (2011). Where that album floated and glided, “Dream Lover” jolts and shakes, right from the very beginning. Dan Bejar doesn’t allow the breakneck pace to slow down, somehow turning the song into something even more urgent by the time the track hits its finale. It’s hard to hit a climax when there’s seemingly nowhere to go but down, yet Bejar uses his fiery opening as a gateway to explore even rockier terrain later on. For an act we thought we had figured out, Destroyer and “Dream Lover” is as bold and convincing of a reintroduction as anyone could have possibly imagined.
Poison Season is out August 28 through Merge/Dead Oceans.