DEHD – ” Flower Of Devotion ” Remixed

Posted: September 8, 2021 in MUSIC

Dehd are releasing “Flower Of Devotion” Remixed next week, which finds the band handing over songs from their latest album to Lala Lala, Freak Heat Waves, Lionlimb, and more to be reworked. The band have just shared the remix of “Loner” by Detroit’s Protomartyr, who take the track in some surprising, cool ways, delivering more of a dancey version than you might expect.

“I have a suspicion that this is the most badass a Dehd song will ever sound simply because Protomartyr are so badass,” says Dehd’s Jason Balla. “They have a way of making gloomy optimism and ‘Loner’ is swimming in it. I got to tour with them a few years back and their live performances have really left an impression on me. I think it was also on this fated tour that our tour manager introduced me to the music of Detroit house producer Moodymann, which has been a big inspiration to me and to the idea of making this remix record.”

“I want nothing more than to be a loner,” Emily Kempf sings early on “Flower of Devotion”, the album by Chicago trio Dehd. It’s a startling admission coming from a songwriter who, just a year ago on Dehd’s critically acclaimed Water, wrote eloquently about the joys and pains — more than anything, the necessity — of love, compassion, and companionship. But then, “admission” isn’t really the right word here, given the stridency of Kempf’s tone. “Loner” is a declaration.

The record ups the ante on Dehd’s sound & filters in just enough polish to bring out the shining and melancholy undertones in Jason Balla and Emily Kempf’s song writing, even as it captures them at their most strident. Balla’s guitar lines at times flirt with ticklish cosmic country, while at others they reflect the dark marble sounds of Broadcast. Kempf, meanwhile, establishes herself as a singer of incredible expressive range, pinching into a high lonesome wail, letting loose a chirping “ooh!,” pushing her voice below its breaking point and letting it swing down there. When she and Balla bounce descending counter-melodies off one another over McGrady’s one-two thumps, or skitter off over a programmed drum pad, they sound like The B-52s shaking off heartache.

What makes Flower of Devotion so impressive is how its creation seems to have strengthened its creators, both as individuals and as a unit, even as they’ve stared down their own limitations. It’s also striking just how much fun they seem to be having in the process. “It’s okay to be light hearted in the face of despair,” Kempf says. It’s a theme that runs through the album, from the opening back-and-forth build of “Desire” to the click-clacking chorus of “Haha,” which finds them deflating their own history.

“The aural equivalent of a gleam of hope.” – Bandcamp

“An effortless, elegantly rumpled strain of indie rock with a light touch, ample reverb, and killer vocal harmonies.” –Pitchfork (Best New Music)

“One of the most lively and inspired rock albums to come down the pike in recent memory.” – Variety

Dehd’s “Flower Of Devotion” Remixed out September 17th on Fire Talk Records.

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