Redondo Beach native Bryan Deister has recently transplanted to Boston via a scholarship to Berklee College of Music, where he has since put out a double album called Spines of the Heart. This subtle and classically composed electronic album released in late December and has already earned a number one rank with ReverbNation. For his part, however, Deister seems only concerned with “…(being) able to write interesting music without starving.”
Both music and vocals on Spines of the Heart are soft-spoken and thought-provoking. Deister names such musical influences as Thom Yorke, Jeff Buckley and Bjork as contributing to his style, but this album is truly unique to the budding prodigy. It seems, however, that he is still experimenting with style, as Deister’s first album, Bathroom Revelations, was both more analog and more pop-oriented. In this new work, he seems to have fallen in love with the Moog and is leaning more on his classical training both in composition and vocal timbre.
It seems that Spines of the Heart is designed to be listened to as one cohesive work; each track melds into the next to create an emotive and symphonic yet electronic musical journey. As far as individual tracks go, the opening two stand out as being definitive of this particular work. “All that I Have” has a classical structure and features Deister’s vocal range in a whisper-quiet yet bell-clear falsetto. In “Responding Well,” Moog-inspired tones as well as an unexpected punk rock crescendo take center stage. Farther down the track list, “Wait” seems devoid of the electronic wall of sound in many others, featuring only Deister and a high-level voice modulator. It does, however, show Deister’s stylistic diversity and his desire to experiment with sound as he continues to develop his work.
It could be said that Spines of the Heart is a departure for Bryan Deister, but it seems from his whole catalog that this artist is not concerned even the slightest bit with having his style defined. Deister may be one of those rare cases in experimental music that everything he produces is a complete break from the last thing. No matter where this strange trajectory takes him next, however, Spines of the Heart is a truly interesting and challenging electronic piece. Click above to stream Spines of the Heart via Deister’s SoundCloud page or on Youtube, courtesy of CD Baby. Visit Deister’s website for upcoming tour info and to read his full story.
Written by Layla Marino
Blog: (Dropping) Weird Science