Friday, February 04, 2011

Photos / Review : Deerhoof @ Mohawk

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In a world full of stagnant musicians and bedroom projects that never evolve beyond their original inception, there is Deerhoof. With the recent release of the band's 11th studio album, Deerhoof vs. Evil, the group has fully reinforced their status as purveyors of some of the finest, strangest, most fun music out there. They have a way of simultaneously taking no prisoners and being the most lovable band around.

Tuesday's show at Mohawk has to be one of the coldest the band has ever played and certainly one of the coldest the members of the audience had ever been to. The crowd wasn't exactly crowding the stage for the openers, not because of the quality of the music (which was good), but because the cold kept them under the heaters at the back of the space, shivering, smoking cigarettes and clutching cups of whiskey.

By the time Deerhoof took the stage, however, the crowd mobilized and headed for the stage, maintaing a manageable level of body heat from person to person. The band set up quickly and launched into material from Deerhoof vs. Evil to Offend Maggie and Friend Opportunity, mostly. The set was driven by the energy of the crowd and the bite of the cold. The band didn't let up and crowd wouldn't have wanted them to anyway because they were moving and singing along when they could. Drummer Greg Saunier took his usual breaks from playing to joke with the crowd in his own unique way about how the band was excluding him on their side of the stage and he felt left out so he got on the mic to talk to the people and air his grievances. He even traded his helm at the kit with guitarist John Dieterich and played guitar and sang for one song, further staking his place as one of today's most talented musicians. Dieterich and Ed Rodriguez were fully in sync throughout the show and weren't afraid to let the crowd know how much fun they were having. Satomi left the bass behind a few times to join the crowd on the front row and do her signature dances which everyone seemed to enjoy. The synchronization between the four members of the band was the most shining aspect of the show. The loud, fuzzy guitars with the spastic drums and Satomi's bass lines acting as the foundation for which the colossus was built on made some of the richest live sounds I've ever heard.

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