Published May 16, 2015If you haven't seen Deerhoof in a while, you won't know what to expect — Noise cranks? Cutesy pop? It could be anything. Their attack is never static; all you know is that there'll be Greg Saunier (the tallest drummer in showbiz) and singer/bassist Satomi Matsuzaki, although the line-up has actually settled down over the last six years.
Their set this evening was brilliant, slanted heavily towards material from their latest album, La Isla Bonita, which most connoisseurs agree is one of their straightest rockers (even displaying surf music overtones). Amidst the waves, guitarist John Dieterich pulled off wild, ungainly licks recalling Bill Orcutt, while his string partner Ed Rodriguez posed like a rock star and soloed like one of those Santeri Ojala shredding videos on YouTube. Meanwhile, Matsuzaki pulled out all of her mesmerizing dance moves, Saunier practiced his French on the Francophone audience, and they played like their unique, time-trashing approach to high functioning.
The way Deerhoof combine their bizarre time-and-form-bending approach to highly complex pop nuggets is an alchemical process beyond easy explanation, but it is a goddamn blast to witness.