Posts Tagged ‘deerhoof’

Deerhoof

January 2nd, 2011 | Features | 0 Comments

This week’s band of the week is one of the most exciting, interesting, and consistently solid bands in contemporary indie rock. Their popularity kind of peaked a couple years ago, but the quality of the music has been pretty stable since then, not to mention long before. This week’s band of the week is…

DEERHOOF!!!

The story of Deerhoof is long and complicated. Basically it starts with Greg Saunier, who founded Deerhoof (or what later became Deerhoof) in the early 90s. In 1995, some version of the band signed to the legendary Kill Rock Stars label and they’ve been pumping out albums on it for the last 15 years.

The band has gone through a number of lineup changes, perhaps the most notable of which was when the band acquired Japanese lead singer Satomi Matsuzaki, who joined the band with no previous musical experience. She simply had the right vibe, and her simplistic, cooing vocals have been an integral element in the band’s sound ever since.

If you don’t already know Deerhoof‘s sound, it’s this arty mish-mash of melodies produced by a range of guitars and keyboards, often heavily treated with cool effects to give them a spiky, cartoonish quality. Imagine Captain Beefheart soundtracking Scooby Doo and that might get you on the right track. However, what makes the band so impressive is how compelling those melodies are, and how their prog-rock structures are so tightly wound into solid compositions. The makeup of a song can shift instantly, and weird new sounds can emerge from unexpected places within the soundscape.

Deerhoof‘s 2007 album Friend Opportunity seemed to launch them to a new level of indie reverence, and though the band hasn’t been as culturally prominent as they were for about five minutes back then, they’ve lost none of the respect they garnered getting to that point, nor many fans. 2008’s Offend Maggie didn’t attract as much attention as its predecessor, but it was received with substantial critical fanfare. The upcoming (though already leaked) Deerhoof vs. Evil easily ranks among their best work and though it doesn’t feel like the band has progressed much stylistically since their previous work, they do what they’ve always done really, really well. And if you’re unfamiliar with what they do, check it out, and make sure you go back and catch yourself up on this great band’s phenomenal catalogue.

Interview with Stop Die Resuscitate

March 5th, 2008 | Uncategorized | 0 Comments

This interview was conducted by Marc Z. Grub on February 29th at Weaselpalooza in Toronto with members Luke and Lyle of the Toronto band Stop Die Resuscitate.

M: So, you guys…I don’t know too much about you but I know that you did a remix for Apostle of Hustle.
Luke: Yes, we’ve done a lot of remixes.
M: Who else have you remixed?
Luke: Dandi Wind, Vitamins for You, Spiral Beach, My Brightest Diamond, we just finished a remix for Buck 65, we just finished a remix for Tegan and Sarah and we’re doing another one for Plastic Little. K?
M: Great. How do you get to do all these remixes?
Luke: People ask us and then, y’now, we work it out and then we do them.
M: Bands themselves (ask you to do them)?
Lyle: Yep, or their management.
M: How did you get into remixing? How’d that get started?
Lyle: Making our own music or, I don’t know.
Luke: I don’t know how it happened. I guess we did this Deerhoof remix, kind of like, whatever, like anyone could have done it and then people heard it and they liked it and they wanted us to do remixes for them.
Lyle: It was interesting because the Deerhoof one was on blogs in like Nigeria. Like really weird places. It was like “what? People are listening to this in Nigeria?” And it was Deerhoof so it’s like really noisy and weird sounding and stuff so…
Luke: That was like our first remix we ever did. It was like an open one anyone could have done and we just kinda did it as like…messing around.
Lyle: Oh, OK Cobra, we also have to say OK Cobra.
M: What program did you use?
Lyle: Mostly Cubase.
M: What’s your strategy for the remixes. It’s getting really big now, like everyone’s remixing everyone.
Luke: We take like an element out of a song and then we just really amplify that element. So if there’s a moment that’s like “oh this sounds kind of like disco,” we turn the whole thing into a disco song.
Lyle: I don’t know, it’s pretty weird. I think we try not to do the same thing twice so some of the stuff is like electro and the New Buffalo one is kind of like My Bloody Valentine.
Luke: Oh yeah, we did New Buffalo too. Yeah, the New Buffalo one’s really cool, it’s like really down-tempo.
Lyle: It’s sort of like all different. One of the Buck 65 ones is kind of like disco.
Luke: It’s more Techno-y.
M: So asides from remixes, you guys are in the band Stop Die Resuscitate What’s going on with that?
Lyle: We’re trying to record a new record. We released an album a couple years ago and then we had a twelve-inch release last year.
Luke: We have a video out for it now.
Lyle: Yeah, we released a video for it a month ago for a song called “Bad Night”. We’re happy with that, we’re really proud of it. Now we’re just trying to finish off the new album basically.
M: You guys are independent right now, right?
Luke: We’re on a label called Summer Lovers Unlimited. They’re based in Montreal. They’ve got The Tough Alliance. They originally signed Crystal Castles but things kinda didn’t work out with that somehow. So now they’re just doing a remix album or something. (They’ve got) Dandi Rand and Apache Beat, who are great, from New York.
M: Are you guys playing any festivals soon?
Lyle: We played Lee’s last weekend. Uh, we’re playing White Orchid but we’re not playing any festivals until the record’s done.
Luke: We just played a festival in London in the summer with Creepy 73, the Lola festival, that was really good.
M: Are you guys working with any producers or is the new record self-produced.
Lyle: Nope, it’s still us all.
M: Great, that’s all.
You can hear Stop Die Resuscitate on their Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/stopdieresuscitate
And their remixes at: http://www.myspace.com/stopdieremixes