There are many levels to which we will go to be some of the first to hear new music from some of our favourites. Such the perennial affection felt for Deerhunter has coyly allowed them to provide us with such a proving challenge, the revealing of a countdown clock on their website setting alarms both literally and metaphorically. With the time differences that play a cruel part on us in such circumstances, we find ourselves here at gone 3am excitedly waiting to hear what the hell Bradford Cox and co have meticulously produced in their minds this time. With the reveal of ‘Snakeskin‘, the first single from their forthcoming seventh album ‘Fading Frontier‘, we can thankfully announce that once again they have not disappointed.
In the last decade, especially since the release of the undeniable modern classic ‘Halcyon Digest‘ and the angsty cause of ‘Monomania‘, it’s become apparent that it is best to approach any creativity from Deerhunter with an open mind. What makes ‘Snakeskin‘ so compelling is that its direction is so unexpected, yet somehow makes sense as a next step. It’s immediate, it’s funky, it’s (whisper it) danceable. Sultry, staccato guitar flecks meet snare-heavy Disco percussion that sounds recorded live from the club, production clipped and polished in the intrinsic manner that made ‘Halcyon‘ so cohesive. Bradford is sharp, to the point and unavoidable, delivering a vocally perverse strut as he sheds his past loneliness and melancholy with an almost blasé air and grace.
It’s welcoming to hear them so forthright and confident, yet keeping that element of ambiguity in subtle touches of swirling-psych synth within ‘Snakeskin’s fading moments. In a broad, early summation, an amalgamation of the attitude and grit from ‘Monomania’ with the pristine clarity and focus from ‘Halcyon Digest’ makes for an altogether irresistible prospect, but as we’ve come to learn from them, we can only expect the unexpected. At least we can be thankful that we have received a more than commanding introduction that was more than worth the wait for.