something about Deerhoof’s last record you lousy jerk ! »
I’m telling you, life ain’t funny for the dog faced boys, especially when
they are writing reviews for a webzine. Anyway, I have got to write something.
am not a real member of Only Angels’ team. I just hang around sometimes in
the places they go to (just to show off actually) and when they are in a good
mood they ask me to do a little review (even if most of my production has been
refused until now. I wish they had accepted my article about polyrythms in
Saxon’s “Wheels of Steel”...I’m sure you would have liked to read
something about that...). Actually, they often ask me to write about the
hardest bands to describe. Maybe you remember that I had a hard time trying to
review Melt Banana’s last record. This is a conspiracy...
one more time for the world (if that really means something). Well, well,
well. Let me start with the usual bullshit. I don’t know a lot about
Deerhoof. I have discoverd this band very recently and I just have their three
last records “Reveille”, “Apple O” and “Milk Man”. That’s really
a few of their production since I think they have made something like 6 LPs up
first time I heard their music was at one of their shows. Do you really care
about the shows I’m going to? No. But maybe it will help to describe their
music. I could not stay long that night but what I saw was excellent. Deerhoof
is a 5 piece band:two guys play guitar, another one plays drums and a tiny
little japanese girl (Satomi Matsuzaki) plays bass. The show was incredible.
Their drummer is completely crazy on stage. He plays with a very little
drumkit (only a snare drum, a bass drum a a big ride cymbal) and do very
stunning breaks even when the band is playing a little pop song. Satomi sings
with a kind of bird voice and dances with very funny steps. She plays bass as
if she was a kind of manga heroin, something like “Lucille, amour et rock
n’ roll” or Sailor Moon (notice that I always compare music to manga
everytime there is at least one japanese member in the band, even if I know
absolutely nothing about mangas...).
quite hard to describe Deerhoof’s music. It is a kind of blend of jazz-rock,
electronic sounds, experimental and very beautiful pop songs. They sometimes
use a drum machine on their records (but not on stage I think) and keyboards.
The song “Rainbow silhouette of the milky rain” is a good example of what
I am trying to explain. “Dog on the sidewalk”, the following track is also
a very experimental song. The two guys who play guitar also play in another
band called Gorge Trio in which they perform some jazz-rock-concrete-contemporary-pop
music. Something really weird, full of crazy polyrythmic structures, sometimes
completely improvised, sometimes very much written.
could say (somebody who would have listened to Deerhoof for quite a long time)
that “Milk Man” is just another good record by a very good band. A good
record, but there's nothing new in their music. That’s true, to a certain
extent. This record is filled with the kind of songs the band is usually
playing: pop songs with crazy drum breaks and catchy music/singing and short
tracks almost experimental. But I tend to think that the band is doing much
more than repeating itself. They have not only find their own style (they have
been playing something really original for a long time). They are proposing
one of the most original and succesfully accomplished music of these days.
suppose that I have not been really clear telling you how Deerhoof’s music
sounds like. If you have never listened to this band but if you want to hear
something which could seem to be straight pop music (after all the song
“Milk Man” is a very nice pop song) but manage to combine very broad
musical influences, try Deerhoof and I guess that you won’t be disappointed.
And if you're familiar with this band and if you enjoyed “Apple O”, you
will like this record.
“parisian walkways” de Tupolev
/may 15th 2004/