For more than 20 years, Dan Bejar has been putting out albums under the name Destroyer, a moniker that hints at Bejar’s habit of reimagining his music with each new release. The trend continues with Destroyer’s forthcoming album, ken, due Friday, in which Bejar sings menacing songs about class warfare and the apocalypse over seductive synth-rock grooves that hearken back to ’80s groups like New Order and Depeche Mode.
Like every Destroyer album, ken is utterly unlike any of the other Destroyer albums that came before it. The common threads, of course, are Bejar’s distinctive vocals and his witty, if also occasionally impenetrable, lyrics. It’s another top-flight entry in one of the richest discographies in modern rock.
On the podcast, Bejar talks about the inspiration for ken, which (sort of) includes the 1994 album Dog Man Star by the cult Britpop band Suede, and (perhaps, though not explicitly) nods in the direction of the disruptive blowhard currently in charge of the US government. We also spoke about Bob Dylan’s gospel period in the late ’70s and early ’80s and Bejar’s mid-life embrace of The Doors, which he insists is sincere. At least I think it’s sincere — Bejar is the driest wit all of in indie rock, as our often funny conversation shows.