Deerhunter - Monomania

Returning to the centre

Deerhunter frontman Bradford
Cox has claimed that the
state of “monomania”, after
which his band have named
their sixth album, relates to
him having never “moved on”
like his bandmates, instead
remaining single-minded
and, for better or worse,
constantly focused on
nothing but his music.

Bearing this in mind,
these new tracks feel, more
than ever, like very personal
work. Indeed, following the
breezier psychedelic sound of
solo project Atlas Sound’s
recent work, Monomania
emerges fraught, scratchy,
anguished and explosive.
Back To The Middle, one of
its best moments, feels like
a mission statement, with the
middle being perhaps Cox’s
own artistic core; the title
track, which rips away into
a motorcycle field recording
after building ferociously,
suggests a movement –
towards who knows what –
but a determined and noisy
one to boot.

Fans who’d grown to love
the smoother sounds –
saxophones and all – of
predecessor Halcyon Digest
might be in for a surprise, but
Monomania retains those
same Deerhunter kernels if
you’re willing to forage. You
might get your fingers grubby,
but the fruit, often deep inside
the shell, is still delicious.

3 stars 3 stars 3 stars

4AD | CAD 3307 (CD / LP)

Reviewed by Jake Kennedy
<< Back to Issue 415

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