DEERHUNTER – ” Fading Frontier ” Best Albums Of 2015

Posted: November 23, 2015 in Classic Albums, MUSIC
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The Atlanta art-rock provocateurs have done what so many of their peers from the Early Aughts Indie Explosion have failed to do: age gracefully. They aren’t making soft rock per say, but they are making some sublimely smooth indie rock that encapsulates the best lessons learned from their earlier, more aggressively arty works. Tracks like “Duplex Planet” inspired by the legendary fanzine of the same name and “Living My Life” make getting old just as mysterious and exciting as being young, while the glam-rock shuffle of “Snakeskin” is the grown-and-sexy song of the year. Bradford Cox and company have found a way to tease pop concepts out fine art, have rebuilt their songcraft out of the shattered pieces of 21st century rock ‘n’ roll to create and art-rock record that is as challenging as it is mature.

Last year, Bradford Cox got hit by a car, and he came out of the resulting depression with his gentlest, most comfortable collection of songs yet. “Fading Frontier” isn’t a happy album, exactly — there’s still anxiety and uncertainty and a nagging preoccupation with the looming specter of mortality. But those are all essential parts of human existence, and it seems that Cox has made peace with them. That maturity could translate to a lack of urgency, and Fading Frontier doesn’t feel like a statement on the level of something like Monomania. But when you’ve got songs this good, who cares

Deerhunter, imbued with a melange of R.E.M., Big Star and, dare we say, a touch of Roger McGuinn and Gene Clark harmony, have embraced the melodic on their lamentable opus to the Fading Frontier. Suffused in a crystalline and hazy production that recalls both the Animal Collective and Beach House, the band, mostly carrying around Bradford Cox’s baggage, have never sounded clearer and brighter. Slithering to esoteric swamp boogie, college rock and dreamy Numan-esque synth, Deerhunter navigate through the depressive thoughts and resignation of their de facto band leader; his near-fatal car accident, delusions and Marfan syndrome illness plaintively and sometimes philosophically pouring from every lyric.

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