Deerhoof: DEERHOOF VS. EVIL

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Deerhoof - DEERHOOF VS. EVIL






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SF-based band Deerhoof have cornered their own market: No one else specializes in both alienating and intriguing an audience as much as this indie-pop quartet. Like any other experimental band, they've managed to create their own standards, pique curiosity and resist any labels imposed upon them.

With the release of their 11th album, Deerhoof vs. Evil, the band continues in that unaffected trajectory, creating yet another consistently inconsistent work. The tracks will massage themselves into iTunes playlists and engage with their relatable poppiness, though extended listening reveals intermittent phrases of discord peppered throughout. Mismatching style and mood, the album boasts disparate influences, featuring gamelan-like beats and a piecemeal nature. The collaged layering of Satomi Matsuzaki's schoolgirl vocals amongst the distorted and distinct noise reflects an intentional incongruity mirrored by the band's advertising strategy: to release each song, one by one, on different international sites and blogs up until Deerhoof vs. Evil's release on January 25th.

The album is no hard pill to swallow, but bitter enough to keep your ears alert; Deerhoof are not the type of musicians to appeal to mindless make-out listening, but remain offbeat (and off-tempo) enough to make you marvel at their distinct collection of sounds. Listening to their albums isn't exactly an immersive experience, but rather one marked by a novel peculiarity and - some might say - intellectual stimulation.

Unsettling and sometimes abrasive, Deerhoof vs. Evil retains a cerebral tone, never quite seeming material enough to be real. Instead, it occupies the taste of sugar gone bad (er...evil): sweet enough to go down, sour enough to linger afterwards - if only for just a short while.






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