The last couple Eels albums have had some interesting turns. Mark Oliver Everett (“E”) has always made Eels music a hot and cold mix of uptempo songs and some slower songs but over the past couple albums the slower songs focusing on lyrics have taken over.
“The Deconstruction” is largely made up of slower, lyrically based songs. This doesn’t mean the songs are bad by any means but it makes the album a little tougher listen than say, “Hombre Lobo.” This album really has two uptempo songs, the lead single “Today Is The Day” and “You Are The Shining Light.” “Today Is The Day” finds E as upbeat as ever, professing about the wonderful possibilities of the day. “You Are The Shining Light” finds a downright raunchy, distorted guitar lick blasting on the experimental track. The dark, tingling bass line on “Bone Dry” sets the tone for the tortured song as several other tracks on the record follow this template, it is called “The Deconstruction” after all. The slow and true approach on “Rusty Pipes” lets E display his vocal prowess, singing his way through another downtrodden tale. On the acoustic “Be Hurt” you get encouraged to let the pain flow, although the song about embracing pain is one of the few uplifting songs of this group.
Overall E doesn’t really make bad records and this one definitely isn’t bad either. It seems his stronger songs are upbeat like what made up his last record “Wonderful, Glorious.” Instead you get some singer-songwriter tunes here much closer to the Eels “Cautionary Tales” album.
Key Tracks: “Today Is The Day” “Bone Dry” “You Are The Shining Light”