Deerhunter – “I also want to thank the literalists…”

Bradford Cox, Deerhunter,

…said Deerhunter‘s Bradford Cox to the audience  towards the end of the band’s set.

He was referring to two girls down in front who had come dressed up as a “Deer” (with a deer mask and a giant round bullseye body) and a “Hunter” (coveralls, orange trucker cap). “Hey Josh,” Cox gestured towards his bassist, “which do you think is more hot, the deer or the hunter?” The bassist – who spent most of the night simply nodding, lightly, contentedly – said that he thought maybe the deer was more hot.

Josh Fauver, Deerhunter, photo

“By HOT,” Cox squawked, “He means, you know, hotttt sexy.” A few people laughed.

“YOU PEOPLE DON’T LIKE MY JOKES” Cox chided in a high-pitched whine. A few more people laughed.

But we weren’t there for Cox’s jokes – though he does, generally, give good quirk. (To wit: During Deerhunter’s last Vancouver visit, opening for Spoon at a lofty, sit-down orchestra hall, Bradford simply just hopped off stage while playing and continued his guitarwork in the carpeted aisleways until he was joined by a few dozen hipsters who danced all around him. Score: 1 for the Openers).

Bradford Cox, Deerhunter,

No, we were there for the layers, the long noodly guitar outros, the West Coast alternative vibe (think  a gritty Grizzly Bear meets Beach Boys on a messy booze binge) and to hear stuff off of the band’s very new and lovely album Halcyon Days.

And we did.

The set was pretty Halcyon-heavy, with guitarist Josh Fauver starting the whole thing off singing the great “Desire Lines”…and the band ending somewhere past the superlong fuzz of “Nothing Ever Happened” from Microcastle and then finally on “Fluorescent Grey” from Cryptograms with Bradford crawling around on his back amps. (LOOK OUT! HE’S GONNA FALL! Oh, no, he’s not…PHEWF!) Local blog A Reminder has its own review and set list here if you fancy peeping it.

Lockett Pundt, Deerhunter,

Only one problem. The sound. Judging by the reaction of everyone I mentioned this to (“WHAAAT?” *look puzzled*), I am perhaps the only person on Planet Geekland to really notice how much Vancouver’s concrete bunker The Rickshaw can suck arse for sound. In fact – and I’d only had one beer –  I’m quite convinced that music there hangs in mid-air, slides down the grey stone slab, and onto one’s shoes. And that’s AFTER it’s been strained through a pair of pantyhose.

I can assure you Halcyon Days does actually employ different instruments. While whooshy and titular-ly muddyheaded, you can totally pick out elements. It’s cleaner than past seasons of Deerhunting, but not so tonight.

Bradford Cox, Deerhunter,

So, Deerhunter, sorry about the room. Sorry if I’m being superanalpickygeeky. And yeah, okay, it wasn’t your best show and the crowd mightn’t’ve gotten your jokes, but at least we have literalists. And that, Deer friends, is everything. \m/

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