A band like Deerhunter is synonymous with any word that signifies consistency. Whether they are releasing music for free or just the mere fact that there always seems to be a small goodie at their shows, they also release music at a consistently solid pace. Last year, they delivered the stunningly magnificent double album, Microcastle/Weird Era Cont. and now they are back with an EP of equal value, Rainwater Cassette Exchange EP.
In his review of that album, Joe Davenport touted it as “every bit the equal of Cryptograms in terms of quality while being vastly different in a number of ways.” Along the same thoughts, in more ways than one, the same holds true here. It’s a short, succinct EP and one that appears to end too soon. But this is only because the music presented on it is of the best quality.
With his usual songwriting intact, Bradford Cox is found singing about his own life and the trials he has gone through. “Game of Diamonds”‘ slowly enveloping stance is a brilliantly expressed sound, as Cox sings, “Now I’ve forgotten how to speak, a problem with my chemistry, now I can’t sleep and I wont eat” he sounds sadly relaxed, able to admit his concerns. And as the piano dances around him, he’s willing to accept his fate.
But just in the sense that the Atlanta-based band are just that, a band, every piece is just as important as the last. “Circulation” sounds like something that was recorded during “Nothing Ever Happened”‘s inception: growing crescendos, a mesmerizing guitar lick and a delectable style shift with atmospheric sounds thrown in for good measure.
Continuing to grow and progressing like any good fan would hope for, the band nestles in between their fuzzy punk and placid ambience. Their best strength has always been the way they juxtapose the two: “Disappearing Ink” has the upbeat flavor and tide to appear on any of The Strokes’ albums, while the textured haze that covers the opening title track has become one of the band’s unfailing facets. And as things only pick up from here, it’s obvious that these guys don’t mess around.
As a band that fully deserves any praise they receive, Deerhunter is only going to get better. Kranky jokes that maybe Deerhunter should be added to the list of bands that “arguably work best in the EP format” and while their LPs are again, consistently, some of the year’s best albums, it is definitely true that their EPs are no slouches either.