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band: Deerhoof

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Deerhoof

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band: Deerhoof

Postby alex on Mon Dec 08, 2003 11:31 am

You know, I'm a rabid Deerhoof fan for sure and of course I'll fight to the death all you crap sayers out there. But the thing I keep contemplating is what would happen if they, like, threw broken glass at their audience a la Black Dice instead of, say, inviting them over for pop tarts. I suppose this can serve as a critique of the "northwest" ethic overall.
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Postby tmidgett on Mon Dec 08, 2003 11:32 am

a fine band!

deerhoof!
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Postby Angus Jung on Mon Dec 08, 2003 2:24 pm

Black Dice doesn't throw broken glass at the audience. Neither Black Dice nor Deerhoof are from the northwest. I'm not sure what was supposed to serve as a critique of a nonexistent northwest ethic.

After 9+ years, Deerhoof are experiencing a creative and popular reniassance that has come about on their own terms, via their great creativity and hard work. It couldn't be happening to better, more deserving people.

They've already another album in the can! Look for it in March!

Oh yeah- Not Crap.
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Postby alex on Tue Dec 09, 2003 11:18 am

Angus, your reply was a little unnecessarily wrathful wasn't it?

Looking over your old posts I suspect you just might sympathize with the absurd juxtaposition I conjured. It is out of profound love for and utter devotion to both bands that I contemplate the Hello Kittiest aspects of the Northwest / Olympia / KRS / Deerhoof going to bat with the glass - throwingest sociopathic tendencies of the midwest / Chicago / Texas / Black Dice (who of course aren't literally even remotely midwestern). I wouldn't feel as strongly about Black Dice if they hadn't thrown glass at their audience and I wouldn't feel as strongly about Deerhoof if not for their unabashed naivete. What a funny contradiction! All parties involved are exceedingly smart, self - reflexive and clever and would not be offended by what I am saying.

Aligning bands with movements or regions might oversimplify them. But the reckoning with those oversimplifications makes both the bands and their fans better understand themselves and their roots and history and all that special meaning - engendering stuff. The only worthy criticism you could make--and reading between your lines above I think this is why you're offended--is that if I'd thought about it more Deerhoof already throws glass at their audience. They have already reached perfection. So thanks for indirectly leading me to that realization.

I too am thrilled that more people are hearing Deerhoof. Please remember this if you're drafting another blunt and / or wrathful reply.
Last edited by alex on Tue Dec 09, 2003 1:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby cjh on Tue Dec 09, 2003 11:56 am

I saw them just last night in Nottingham supporting the Ex who were as beautiful and inspirational as ever (first time I've caught them with Rozemarie on double bass, she fits in seamlessly. Also, I read in their newsletter that some new tracks have been recorded with the proprietor of this place..expectation mounts) and can happily report they were just great - my first ever exposure to the ways of the 'hoof and it was giddy and intoxicating, the small but rapt crowd loved them. not crap
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Postby Biznono on Tue Dec 09, 2003 1:16 pm

Had Keith Moon and Yoko Ono ever engaged in unprotected lovemaking, they might have produced Deerhoof. But Deerhoof write better songs (I think Keith Moon only wrote one song, although he did do the amazing fiddle arrangement at the end of Baba O’Riley -- don’t count this). Not Crap!
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Postby Angus Jung on Tue Dec 09, 2003 2:19 pm

Hi Alex: I didn't mean to come off as 'wrathful.' I just wasn't sure what you were talking about. I was blunt, though.

I guess I don't buy your premise. I don't think of Black Dice as confrontational and I don't think of Deerhoof as naive/childlike/K Records.

Black Dice now makes incredible 21st century pyschedelic music and their shows are really inclusive, I think-the opposite of glass throwing. If you talk to them now, they'll tell you that they want very, very much to distance themselves from their past. They claim it was all overblown (I saw 'em then and can't really agree), it was mostly due to drunkenness on their part, and they hate that this 'confrontational' tag still dogs them.

People love Deerhoof because of Satomi and how cute she is or whatever, but there's a TON going on beneath this surface (as you know, I think). These guys aren't Beat Happening and I would argue that they don't really subscribe to the K aesthetic. The music they make is not naive, not childlike, not amateurish, and the lyrics aren't either. Do they understand why people think it is? I think so.

Anyway...the love is what matters. We agree.
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Postby Angus Jung on Tue Dec 09, 2003 2:20 pm

...And I had no clue that Keith Moon did the fiddle arrangement on "Baba." Wow!
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Postby Angus Jung on Tue Dec 09, 2003 2:25 pm

...And I had no clue that Keith Moon did the fiddle arrangement on "Baba." Wow!
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Postby alex on Wed Dec 10, 2003 12:12 pm

Okay, I'm glad there's no dissension in the Deerhoof appreciation camp. This has me thinking about aesthetic unity within record labels. Should Deerhoof have made records for KRS, a label who can definitely be blamed for fetishizing the kind of ethos that Deerhoof encapsulates so fantastically and authentically? And what about Unwound and godheadsilo...The greatness of every good record label is owed in part to its eclecticism--Drag City is the most famous example--but wouldn't the world be a better place if Unwound and godheadsilo were on Touch and Go? As much as I spurn the idea of listening to music because of what label it's on there's no doubt that who issues it serves to frame it to some extent.

In your post you bemoan that Deerhoof is often unfairly stuck with that K Records cute, childlike, amateurish reputation. My frustration with this very fact is why I fantasize about them throwing glass or collaborating with Merzbow or Null or something.

That Black Dice is totally disavowing their past and thereby screwing with the traditional trajectory that a "hardcore" band would take is as much a part of their appeal as the glass throwing itself. If they hadn't evolved so absurdly I wouldn't like them as much as I do.
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Postby matthewbarnhart on Wed Dec 10, 2003 2:21 pm

I adore this band, and it all is because of Herr Biznono. I have to admit, I was reluctant at first because their constituent parts (cheap guitars playing in unison, a goofy drummer that plays jagged rhythms that seem to fall apart at random times, a female Japanese bass player that sings about bunnies and pandas when she bothers to sing words at all, general "artiness") have historically been the makeup of some of the world's most annoying music.

After loving the records for many months, when I finally saw them, I felt almost like I was seeing Black Flag for the first time -- it was that powerful and exciting.

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Postby Angus Jung on Wed Dec 10, 2003 3:31 pm

Black Dice and Deerhoof almost played together during BD's most recent tour. It would have happened if the crotchety booker at SF's Bottom Of The Hill wouldn't have arbitrarily taken Deerhoof off the bill and replaced them with 3 bands that had little or no compatibility with BD. Then I tried to book them together in Sacramento the next night but BD chose to skip Sac.

Shutting up now.
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Postby cneutron on Fri Dec 12, 2003 7:31 pm

Deerhoof is very not crap, which is not to say that they've mis-stepped at times because they have. But at least they are always trying.

The Pacific Northwest comparisons are pretty inaccurate they are a bay area band true and true.

-C.
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Postby whiskerando on Fri Dec 12, 2003 8:20 pm

i guess i'm the lone abstainee from liking deerhoof. i saw them at atp in LA two years ago and i sincerely couldn't tell if it was supposed to be a joke. the guitarist broke a string during one of his (what seemed to me) angular 101 riffs and ran off in a huff, leaving the rest of the band to improvise over a two note casio riff wherein the singer just side-stepped back and forth for six or seven minutes. i haven't really given them a chance since then, maybe they've gotten better, i don't know for sure.
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Postby anon on Sat Dec 13, 2003 2:07 am

It really shouldn't matter if Deerhoof treats their audience badly. It wouldn't make their songs any better. It certainly doesn't save the played out performance art shit that Black Dice does. Am I supposed to care what they do because they change their sound from shit to worse? Wow, this hardcore band isn't playing hardcore. That makes every noise they make interesting. And it wouldn't make Unwound or godheadsilo any better if they were on Touch and Go. Unwound and godheadsilo just lent credibility to their label in a time when it was needed. Kill Rock Stars certainly has some questionable acts today. They have even resorted to signing a Dallas area band which is almost never good for business. I can watch shitty bands throw things at the audience almost any night of the week if I go to the right club, warehouse or house show. But when does a band actually improve exponentially over time and make a record like Apple-O? The bottles would just get in the way of that power washing over the audience.
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Postby matthewbarnhart on Sat Dec 13, 2003 3:13 pm

anon wrote:Kill Rock Stars certainly has some questionable acts today. They have even resorted to signing a Dallas area band which is almost never good for business.


Like when Trance signed Bedhead?

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Postby congleton on Sun Dec 14, 2003 12:54 pm

tell em matt!

ahem, never mind the fact that it is actually my band from dallas they "signed"....dallas may suck but that kind of comment is nonsense no matter what city you are talking about.

but i'm not offended at the same time, strange. probably since your from dallas, anon...we have that power i suppose.
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Postby anon on Sun Dec 14, 2003 9:26 pm

Trance and Bedhead. Yeah, that kind of thing doesn't really happen in Texas anymore. Dallas is widely known for its lack of quality. It was voted "most insignificant music scene for a major metropolitan area" by Chunklet magazine. And rightly so. No offense, Congleton. I just have never liked your band. It's nothing personal. Some of my friends do. I doubt you care whether or not your liked locally. Any band worth a damn from Dallas in the last ten or so years isn't on any label. That's a shame. I don't blame the bands entirely and I do at the same time. They should have toured as much as your band has and maybe we wouldn't be so shit on. The only thing to escape from Dallas is the shit. Shit is popular if you haven't noticed. From Centromatic to the Secret Machines to just about anything from this fucking state that has done anything nationally is the bottom of the barrel. I hope it changes. Bedhead and Stickmen with Rayguns are the two screaming exceptions in Dallas music history since 1980. They are of a different quality that I've never seen even close to being equalled around here. Why does it suck so bad?
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Postby congleton on Mon Dec 15, 2003 12:15 am

first off no offense taken in the slightest. i could give a rats cock if you like my band. i am and will always be a hobby musician and have no desire to please anyone but myself when it comes to my music. i sort of enjoy it when people hate my music to be honest. but my point is i have no loyalty to any scene especially a low rent white trash one like dallas. HOWEVER judging from your posts ill be willing to bet you have never been on tour with a band and played all the other shitholes with the opening locals you get stuck with around the world. i've personally done it more times than i can remember and dallas is hardly the worst, top 30 worst, maybe.

so i must be behind the times, what bands are from the area that im missing and arent getting fair exposure?
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Postby matthewbarnhart on Mon Dec 15, 2003 1:47 pm

anon wrote:Trance and Bedhead. Yeah, that kind of thing doesn't really happen in Texas anymore. Dallas is widely known for its lack of quality. It was voted "most insignificant music scene for a major metropolitan area" by Chunklet magazine. And rightly so.


I don't disagree, but as much as I love the zine, I also wouldn't cite Chunklet as a reference in an argument any more than I'd use a quote from Mad magazine in a discussion of US policy in West Africa.

Dallas is a bad place to be a musician because there really aren't any clubs worth a shit -- they're either run by frat boys or bidnessmen, and none of them have any desire to support interesting music. (Atlanta (near Chunklet's hometown) isn't too far removed from Dallas in that regard, either.) Now Dallas is at a point where there is no worthwhile music venue, no worthwhile music press, no radio, and no worthwhile record store -- of course it's gonna suck to be here.

This has fostered a culture of "local music first" in Dallas -- most bands have no knowledge of or interest in the larger independent music community, outside of the occaisional breakout band, and this is why Henry labeled Dallas the way he did.

No offense, Congleton. I just have never liked your band. It's nothing personal. Some of my friends do. I doubt you care whether or not your liked locally. Any band worth a damn from Dallas in the last ten or so years isn't on any label. That's a shame.


Ok, name some of these Dallas bands that are worth a damn that don't have a label. We can at least then figure out what constitues a decent band in your eyes, because I can name as many, if not more, bands from Denton/Dallas that are on some kind of label right now as I can bands from Austin and Houston.

I don't blame the bands entirely and I do at the same time. They should have toured as much as your band has and maybe we wouldn't be so shit on.


That's an ignorant statement. I know bands (from all over) that toured 9+ months a year and never sold more than a couple thousand records. Maybe if some of the kids from Plano would take some of their parent's money and business acumen and start a good venue that nutures independent music, then we would have something to be proud of.

The only thing to escape from Dallas is the shit. Shit is popular if you haven't noticed. From Centromatic to the Secret Machines to just about anything from this fucking state that has done anything nationally is the bottom of the barrel. I hope it changes. Bedhead and Stickmen with Rayguns are the two screaming exceptions in Dallas music history since 1980. They are of a different quality that I've never seen even close to being equalled around here. Why does it suck so bad?


There's a lot of terrible music everywhere -- I can't name five bands from Austin that are worth a shit, and there's no one center of greatness in the universe. Towns go hot and cold over time, and that goes for EVERY town in the USA.

Whether you like a lot of the bands from Denton/Dallas is irrelevant, but you should have respect for the bands around here that have worked hard and accomplished good things for themselves.

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