Boomkat Product Review:
In a strange sort of way, album opener 'The Tears Of Music And Love' kicks off with a riff that could be a minor key translation of Free's 'Alright Now'. Of course, it's not long before Deerhoof are done contorting Paul Kossoff and they're onto the next dizzying bout of guitar noodling. A big part of what makes the band so exciting is that there's never an easy hook. You seem to have to earn every payoff, navigating your way through the taut syncopations of 'My Purple Past' or the chirpy prog-funk fusions of 'Snoopy Waves'. The band sedate themselves a little for 'Chandelier Searchlight', which slips into a jaunty, krautrock ballad format (if that makes any sense at all) - just one of the awkward descriptions that might spring to mind whilst trying to pin down and classify what Deerhoof are doing. More strangeness abounds from the erratic, unstable acoustic fingerpicking of the title track, which despite sounding as if it's all about to collapse at any minute sounds pretty freakin' great. In fact, despite the energetic, garage rock algorithms they've been known for over the years, there's a fair bit of unplugged action going down on Offend Maggie: 'Don't Get Born' and 'Family Of Others' are entirely acoustic and 'Fresh Born' starts out like a Pavement ballad before disappearing into a fully electrified Ill Communication-style organic funk alcove. You really never know what direction the album's going to turn to next, to the point where the discordant electroacoustic experiment 'This Is God Speaking' comes as no surprise. 'Basket Ball Get Your Groove Back' is another strange one. Its jittering rhythms and trickily timed riffs are odd enough, but the cheerleader-like lyrics ("Go, go champions! Be, be champions!") elevate it to another plain of incomprehensibility, rescued from the jaws of banality only by the air-punching classic rock vibes underlining those chunky, fuzzed up guitars. Superb.