Deerhunter Paints A Dreary World On New Record
Written by Chris Ramos on February 10, 2019
Album: Why Hasn’t Everything Already Disappeared?
Release Date: January 18, 2019
Deerhunter crafted a record that is a melancholic dream, accompanied by words that are heavy on the heart with its brash honesty and beautifully haunting melodies.
Why Hasn’t Everything Already Disappeared? is the eighth studio album from the Atlanta based rock band, whose sound is constantly being revamped. With ten songs in its arsenal, the album maintains a consistent style, often times relying on drawn-out instrumentals.
“Death in Midsummer” initiates the listening experience. The baroque pop composition becomes infectious quickly. The vocals of Bradford Cox gently ease into the bouncing rhythm as the lyrics speak of a grim reality attached to the working class life.
“Your friends have died/And their lives, they just fade away/Some worked the hills/Some worked in factories,” Bradford Cox sings.
It’s an explosive track in the sense that it grabs your attention within seconds. The drumming is concise and the harpsichord which is a staple of baroque pop, innocently bounces with its keys, serving as the driving force of the song.
The follow-up, “No One’s Sleeping”, also possess a dynamic rhythm which unwinds into a strange melody several times throughout the song.
The melodic high-point on the entire project is found during the chorus of the gorgeous take “What Happens To People?”. The luscious sounds propel Cox’s vocals into the sky. A song that treads on the topic of losing one’s soul in regards to emotion and empathy is blissfully encapsulated in the chorus that feels eternal. It ties with “Element” as my favorite track off of the record.
“Plains” is a refreshing change of pace, as its upbeat rhythm makes it the most pop-oriented cut. With that being said, we still get a taste of that airy atmosphere and interestingly enough, the song traces its inspiration from actor James Dean.
The drawbacks come to light during the extensive instrumentals. While the execution is there for the most part, “Nocturne” and “Tarnung” feel aimless. Both songs are carried out with the proper intentions, that being an ambitious and experimental approach, but that doesn’t automatically earn a seal of approval. The minutes are desperately stretched, as though a certain runtime demand needed to be met.
However, these drawbacks cannot undo the impressive display of musicianship shown on every other front by Deerhunter and that’s what matters the most.
Why Hasn’t Everything Already Disappeared is a good record with a distinctive sound that’ll keep it memorable and will entice listeners to revisit the effort. Although it gets too overdrawn for its own good, it successfully communicates its themes.