Firefly Pointer Fiberglass Jacket: Bands I am listening to: Deerhunter

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Bands I am listening to: Deerhunter

I've been listening to Deerhunter for a few years now. I actually got to see them open for Nine Inch Nails here in Oakland. I heard of them through Trent Reznor who gave them props. I was going through a phase where I wanted to know what artists inspired both Trent and Joey Ramone. And in Trent's case, presently. I heard of a a lot of good bands through Trent, or rather information about his musical interests posted online. He has a blog and I have read several interviews of his. He is undoubtedly one of my crushes. Which brings me to Deerhunter...

I seem to have a thing for tall pale guys which perfectly describes the lead singer of Deerhunter. His name is Bradford Cox, and quite frankly I think he's a hot looking guy. Like Joey Ramone, he has Marfan Syndrome. So when I say I like 'em tall and skinny, I mean it. If Bradford Cox is half as intriguing as he seems by what I've read and watched then I might be in love. Not only do we share music taste, but we seem to share a lot of personal beliefs. I stumbled across this gem of Bradford dressed as Joey Ramone playing "Do you wanna dance." Be still my beating heart! I need another rock star crush like I need another cup of sugar. Wikipedia describes Deerhunter as "Ambient punk", "art rock" and "post-punk." Pandora had a terific bio written about this band.
 "Deerhunter is an experimental noise rock band from Atlanta, fronted by the compellingly odd singer Bradford Cox. Cox's vocal style blends vocal experimentation along the lines of Meredith Monk or Yoko Ono with a more direct and punky howl inspired by the Fall's Mark E. Smith. Cox is also a striking on-stage presence: the exceedingly skinny 6'4" lead singer has Marfan syndrome, a genetic disorder of the connective tissue that gives him abnormally long and spindly limbs. (The late Joey Ramone was another well-known frontman with Marfan syndrome.) Cox often exaggerates his otherworldly look by performing in Victorian-style party frocks and engaging in Iggy Pop-style acts of ritual self-abasement while his bandmates churn out an aggressive mix of industrial-grind guitars and fractured dance rhythms that often recalls earlier Georgia art punks like the Method Actors and Pylon. Deerhunter was formed in 2001 by Cox and drummer and keyboardist Moses Archuleta; guitarists Colin Mee and Lockett Pundt and bassist Josh Fauver completed the lineup over the following years. Deerhunter signed with the local Atlanta indie Stickfigure Records for their 2005 debut: nominally untitled, the album is also known as "Turn It Up, F**got" (a phrase that doesn't appear on the sleeve), an insult that Cox claimed was often thrown at the band during their gigs. Deerhunter then signed to the higher-profile indie Kranky (Godspeed You Black Emperor!, etc.) for their second album, Cryptograms, as well as the EP Fluorescent Grey.Mee left Deerhunter and was replaced by former cheerleader Whitney Petty. The band recorded their third album Microcastle at New York City's Rare Book Room studio; the album was released digitally two months before it arrived on CD in fall 2008; like Fluorescent Grey, it found Brad Cox and company moving in a more pop-oriented direction. The band toured extensively on the indie festival circuit, but took a break in 2010 to record their fourth album, Halcyon Digest, in their homebase of Athens, GA."
Sometimes it's hard to pin point what exactly it is that I like about this band. Considering I am so strongly positioned in rock and roll. Rock and roll isn't the only music I like, but usually it's the music I want to hear.

I like Deerhunter because I hear elements of other great old bands (like The Mavelettes for example) in their music. They aren't blatantly copying anything, but they are clearly inspired by the greats and the reference can be heard in their music. The first album I heard was "Flourescent Grey" which was amazing to listen to while stoned. You know how music can meet with you at a certain point of time, and it becomes your soundtrack for that point in your life? It made a big impression on me. Seeing them live was a thrill. I went to the Nine Inch Nails show with two friends who had never heard of them and I kept insisting to pay attention to them. I was up in the front of the heart of the pit. Bradford Cox looked like Joey Ramone meets a Thom Yorke style Christopher Robin.

I found out Bradford likes to wear dresses. I approve. 

Their album covers look like optical illusions, for example, the album "Cryptograms."

Perhaps the best thing about this band is they have a solid body of work. All their albums are pretty solid. I have favorite songs ("Revival", "Spring Hall Convert", "Never stops", "Slow Swords"). I keep discovering more I like, the more I listen to this band. I always feel very humbled when I realize I missed an amazing song on an album. Some bands deserve a second look because it can't always all be absorbed the first time. Deerhunter makes me think of modern psychedelic music. When I first heard Nine Inch Nails I couldn't quite understand it. It almost scared me. But I kept listening to it until it didn't scare me anymore. It was quite an experience for a girl from suburbia to have. 

Some might think this is a "different" band for me to like. That wouldn't be too far off, but like I say "I like what I like." 

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