May 16, 2017
Deerhunter is the type of band that not only puts on a killer show technically, but they exceed the idea of greatness in nearly every facet of their art. Even on their more abstract days, the quirky Atlanta-bred band’s triumphant artistic intelligence shines through without diminishing their rich authenticity. Their influences are found in every crack of the human experience. Check out their website, for instance, where a scribbled concept map links ideas spanning from the intimate “poems of Pablo Neruda” to “soulless new car smell” with the central focus being a dog named Faulkner, the band literally draws from the gamut.
Their 2016 release, Fading Frontier, is a burned room, charred and tattered walls with a central window open to an idyllic, centered seascape, pristine in the afternoon daylight. At least, that’s the album art, representing the sound to be expected from the record. Frontman, Bradford Cox, survived a car accident and the deaths of two close personal friends before putting out Fading Frontier. Cox seems to have processed and eventually accepted the shocking events by cathartically working on the material that would become Fading Frontier. The album is more contemplative and grounded than their previous work, domestic and wistful at times. The sound is the timeless tide of the ocean, pulling and swaying with orchestral endurance. It’s both the beautiful, serene seascape and the charred, peeling foundation of a place once known as home. Take the lyrics from “Breaker” for instance, “Breaking the waves again and though I try, the ocean is strong I cannot stem the tide.” Cox existed through the metaphorical fire, which took much of what he loved away, and lives now with a more focused, human perspective on the natural actuality of existence.
Throughout their discography, Deerhunter stays so loved by their fans because they’re the weird kids who grew up together to become the weird adults. They teach that there’s no need to “She’s All That” yourself in order to become worthy and relevant which, in the music industry, is a solid lesson to learn.
This will be the first time Deerhunter will play in Charlotte, North Carolina as they normally choose Carrboro or Asheville to set up shop for the night. Last time the band came around was at The Orange Peel where Cox opened up for Deerhunter by performing an entire set as his solo project, Atlas Sound. He also talked shit about Billy Corgan which was pretty epic.
Catch Deerhunter with Jock Gang on Thursday, May 18 at Neighborhood Theatre.