Archive for the ‘Deerhoof’ Category

CV1_TNY_12_03_12Thiebaud.inddSOUNDTRACKDEERHOOF-Live on KEXP, February 1, 2007 (2007).

deer2Deerhoof is noisy and chaotic, indeed much more noisy and chaotic here than on their 2008 set.  The introduction has the band posing a very funny question in which they asks the DJ about how the show will be streaming in various formats.  He imagines easy listening–a good joke for this uneasy listening band.

There are five songs in this set, although “The Eyebright Bugler,” “+81” and “Wrong Time Capsule” are played as a medley.  This is an interesting set because they play songs from various albums, not just their newest release.  The set opens with “Milkman” (from Milkman) with a quick jump to “Twin Killers” (From The Runners Four).  Then there’s an interview which is, as always, very funny, they’re a very enjoyable band.    It also reveals that a middle school has taken Milkman (I assume the whole album) and made a ballet out of it.

“Eyebright Bugler” (from Reveille) merges easily in “+81” (from Friend Opportunity).  “+81” is one of the most catchy oddball songs I know–a simple riff that seems to project excitement and yet not a full rocking sound.   The DJ even says that people have called up and asked not to play that song because it is such an earworm they can’t get it out of their head (the band takes this as a compliment .  Finally “Wrong Time Capsule” also comes from The Runners Four.    It merges all of the sounds-noisy guitars , conventional bass and the always enchanting vocals.

 Check out the strangeness here

[READ: December 6, 2012] “Manhattan”

The final “Gut Course” in this issue isn’t about food at all but about a drink.

Chang-Rae Lee remembers the summer when he lived with his girlfriend Nina in her parents Fifth Avenue apartment.  He lived in a maid’s quarters while Nina and her friend Carol shared Nina’s room.

This was just before his senior year of college, when the opportunity of living with your girlfriend must have been mindblowing.  But what he remembers most is her father’s request for a nightly Manhattan.

He explains that his family (indeed I have to assume most families in 1986) did not have a cocktail hour.  Chang says that his own father had an occasional Genesee Cream Ale, and hardly finished it.  But Nina’s father (who was a New York sophisticate) taught him how to prepare the perfect Manhattan. (more…)

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SOUNDTRACK: DEERHOOF-Live at CMJ Gibson Showroom (2008).

I don’t know much about Deerhoof (I certainly didn’t know they’d been around over a decade).  I heard them on Pitchfork TV (they had two videos on it about two years ago which I rather liked).  This set was recorded live at CMJ by KEXP.

The DJ is very familiar with the band, and the repertoire is casual and funny (although the Gibson joke falls flat).  They play four songs and each one is virtually an instrumental.  The voice is mixed so low on “Blue Cash,” I didn’t even realize she was singing until the third time I listened, so I don’t know which songs have words.  “Tears of Music and Love” is a bit wilder (with some great crazy drumming in the middle).  “Fresh Born” has a bit more of a sinister edge what with the intense riff and the scratchy feedbacky bridge.  It’s my favorite song of the set.  “Basketball Get Your Groove Back” sounds a bit like “Roadrunner” so it’s less than thrilling end to the set.

I expected the band to be a lot weirder than this, I admit, but it’s still a good set.  You can listen here.

[READ: September 20, 2012] How to Be Black

Karen at A Just Recompense posted about this book a little while ago and after just a few lines, I had to stop reading her post so I could get the book.  I had no idea who Thurston was before I read the book, but it sounded so good.  And it was.  Although it wasn’t exactly what I was expecting.

This book is a combination autobiography of Thurston and “how to” book.  Thurston went to a Quaker School and a black militant program at the same time and also went to Harvard before becoming a stand up comedian; he’s co-creator of Jack & Jill Politics and director of digital at The Onion (that’s some serious cred for a geek like me).  As I said, in addition to being his autobiography, this is also something of a how-to manual for being black.  It’s funny, but not cheesy-over-the-top funny (stereotypes are played with but also deconstructed), it’s “serious” funny, and it’s very enjoyable.  And it covers topics that one might not expect, like talking about the Nigerians he has met who are offended at his name.  Baratunde is a twist on a Nigerian name, although his family is not Nigerian, his mother wanted him to have a traditional African name.  And he is quite annoyed at the Nigerians who assume he doesn’t know what his named means.  He does (and the example he gives is very funny). (more…)

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