Geez. It seems like forever since I actually posted anything. The reason that it seems like forever is that it’s been about 8 days since I have gotten around to firing up the laptop and actually listening to music. Work and real life occasionally take precedent over posting tunes. Regardless, Deerhunter have shared their new tune “Death In Midsummer” and accompanying video too. “Death In Midsummer” has kind of a gauzy vibe to it and feels more in line with a U2-ish vibe. Perhaps that was suggested because of all of the desert imagery.
How do you describe an album out of time, concerned with the disappearance of culture, of humanity, of nature, of logic and emotion? Why make this album in an era when attention spans have been reduced to next to nothing, and the tactile grains of making music have been further reduced to algorithms and projected playlist placement. Why wake up in the morning? Why hasn’t everything already disappeared?
Deerhunter’s eighth LP forgets the questions and makes up unrelated answers. It gets up, walks around, it records itself in several strategic geographic points across North America. It comes home, restructures itself and goes back to bed to avoid the bad news.
From the opening harpsichord and piano figures of “Death in Midsummer”, it is impossible to tell where the record came from. Is No One’s Sleeping an outtake of an aborted Kinks recording session in 1977 Berlin with Eno producing? No. That is nostalgia. If there is one thing Deerhunter are making clear it is that they have exhausted themselves with that toxic concept.
What they spend their time doing instead is reinventing their approach to microphones, the drum kit, the harpsichord, the electromechanical and synthetic sounds of keyboards. Whatever guitars are left are pure chrome, plugged straight into the mixing desk with no amplifier or vintage warmth.
The result is as thrilling, haunting, and unpredictable as anything in their roughly 15 year career.
Deerhunter have made a science fiction album about the present. Is it needed right now? Is it relevant? Perhaps only to a small audience. DADA was a reaction to the horrors of war. Punk was a reaction to the slow and vacant 70s. Hip Hop was a liberated musical culture that challenged the notions presented wholesale about the African-American experience. What is popular music today a reaction to?
Deerhunter / Tour Dates
SUN 11/04 SAO PAOLO, Balaclava Festival
THU 11/08 SANTIAGO, Blondie
SAT 11/10 SANTIAGO, Fauna Primavera
SUN 11/11 BUENOS AIRES, Personal Fest
TUE 11/13 QUITO, La Ideal
WED 11/14 LIMA, Sala Raimondi
THU 1/17 LOS ANGELES, CA Lodge Room (with Confusing Mix of Nations)
MON 1/21 OSAKA, Bigcat (with Gang Gang Dance)
TUE 1/22 NAGOYA, Electric Ladyland
WED 1/23 TOKYO, O-East
FRI 2/15 NASHVILLE, TN Cannery Ballroom (with Faye Webster)
MON 2/18 CLEVELAND, OH Mahall’s 20 Lanes (with Mary Lattimore)
TUE 2/19 DETROIT, MI El Club (with Mary Lattimore)
THU 2/21 TORONTO, ON Danforth Music Hall (with Mary Lattimore)
FRI 2/22 MONTREAL, QC Le National (with Mary Lattimore)
SAT 2/23 NEW HAVEN, CT College Street Music Hall (with Mary Lattimore)
SUN 2/24 BOSTON, MA Royale (with Mary Lattimore)
WED 2/27 BROOKLYN, NY Brooklyn Steel (with Mary Lattimore, L’Rain)
FRI 3/01 PHILADELPHIA, PA Union Transfer (with L’Rain)
SAT 3/02 WASHINGTON DC 9:30 Club (with L’Rain)
SUN 3/03 BALTIMORE, MD Ottobar
TUE 3/05 PITTSBURGH, PA Mr. Small’s Theatre (with L’Rain)
WED 3/06 LOUISVILLE, KY Headliner’s Music Hall (with L’Rain)
FRI 3/08 SAVANNAH, GA Savannah Stopover Music Festival