Review: Deerhoof- Future Teenage Cave Artists


Art by Satomi Matsuzaki

In these horrendous times of Trump, Boris, climate change and global pandemic, who can we turn to? Politicians are clearly not fit for purpose, religion is seemingly an increasingly myopic choice,as systems crumble in the face of smiling optimism.

Let us, you and I, turn to the sweet, warped, dissonant/melodic noise pop of Deerhoof.

Satomi Matsuzaki,Greg Saunier, John Dieterich and Ed Rodriguez are back, ruminating on legacy, love, impermanence and a future worth waking up to.

It’s brilliant as you’d expect, with the right amount of paradoxical joys- caustic wit and hope, sun and clouds, and… errr… Violence against small dogs.


The title track meditates on art as revolution, creating legacies for future eyes to ruminate upon. Loved One is wistful, trebly and as sad as a sigh in a breeze. But both play with call and response lyrics. Such duality is key to the Deerhoof sound.

Then of course, the genre splicing is pushed front and centre, as with O Ye Saddle Babes which fuses jazz and fragmented punk with trademark dazzling drumming from Saunier.

“Why don’t you shoot my puppies?” coos Matsuzaki in the twisted Trumpian nursery rhyme, New Orphan Asylum For Spirited Deerchildren. ‘You’ve gotta be good”, she chides as an antidote,as the song unravels, becoming a film noir twang.

Meanwhile, I Call On Thee is stranger still, as it could be the most straightforward, simple and lovely piece of music they have made. It’s a neo-classical piano piece, perfect for contemplation.

This incredible album seals Deerhoof’s legacy. They remain as unfathomable and elusive as ever, yet absolutely essential.

Out via Joyful Noise on May 29th.


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