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Dustin Wong - Dreams Say, View, Create, Shadows Lead (Thrill Jockey)

24 February 2012

It’s been ages since I’ve heard someone whose music instantly reminds me of Vini Reilly, but that’s exactly who I thought of when I heard Dustin Wong‘s lovely new record, Dreams Say, View, Create, Shadows Lead. The record is a collection of mostly short, impressionistic moments of guitar picking and styling, masterfully mixed together into a sixteen-track, hour-long continuum. The songs are so delicate and gossamer light, dissecting the record would cause it to collapse, and listening to it piecemeal ruins the overall pleasure. It’s best to consider this as a collective listening experience. Over the course of the hour, Wong blends loud and soft, melancholy and upbeat, calm and frantic, flowing each song into the next in ways that might seem perplexing, yet the continuity works wonderfully. He’s also good at tricking the ears; the loud, joyous buildup in “Route Through Eyebrows” gets the listener ready for an epic kaleidoscopic explosion of sounds, and it comes, and it is wonderful. It will surprise you, then, when you look at the time length of this epic, and it’s not even two minutes long! Dreams Say might feel like a sketchbook of ideas, but oh, what a sketchbook it is!


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