Dillon

This Silence Kills

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As distant whirs and an understated funk beat get accentuated by a classic '80s electronic handclap, the title track from Dillon's debut album almost sounds like a collation of a variety of styles from across years and locations. Her apparently hesitant singing, close to the mike and sounding a touch uneasy, is contrasted by wordless drone-like calls in the background. With that, This Silence Kills begins the Berlin-based performer's dipping into the waters of fusing a familiar enough piano/vocal approach with a more off-kilter, varied feeling appropriate for a label like BPitch Control. Dillon's clear embrace of shifting stylistic possibility helps ensure not only interest in the album but how she fits in with so many other performers equally interested in sonic range within a putative genre like "dance," whether it's the cabaret oompah of "Tip Tapping," the fragile Jane Siberry-tinged beauty of "You Are My Winter," or piano notes like sharp icicles and the sweet silliness on the chorus of "Hey Beau." Songs like the wordless "________________" add to the understated atmospherics, but her voice -- perhaps most reminiscent of someone like Alison Shaw of Cranes, though a touch clearer -- is never anything but front and center. The implicit moody balladry in a song like "Thirteen Thirty-Five" is balanced by how the feeling of finger snaps gives a warm, fuzzy kick, while "Abrupt Clarity" concludes the album and its generally drifty mood with an understated but still contextually brutal techno crunch, her singing locked into a lyrical loop. She's no slouch with suddenly affecting lyrics, such as "Your toothbrush is where you left it," delivered over a bed of flute and electronic tones on "Gumache."

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