Halcyon Digest Turns 10
from the it well вЂ” or at the very least I do believe I really do.
Deerhunter circulated the record album a decade ago today, and in just a weeks that are few had been totally enthralled along with it. Microcastle and Bradford CoxвЂ™s magnetic, confrontational phase existence had made me personally a fan, but Halcyon Digest is what cemented DeerhunterвЂ™s place in my individual pantheon of fiercely beloved musicians. It was the mesmerizing that is most, invigorating indie record IвЂ™d heard in years вЂ” one that swirled together decades of rock history into one thing visceral and ephemeral all at once, dark and mystical yet plainly accessible, structurally adventurous while maintaining an unmistakable stylistic imprint. It was the noise of the musical organization ascending to the top of its powers. It became my favorite album of 2010.
So yes, from the dropping under Halcyon DigestвЂs spell. From the it fondly, and judging through the albumвЂ™s place of prominence within DeerhunterвЂ™s discography, therefore execute a large amount of others. But memories could be deceiving. As Cox explained upon Halcyon DigestвЂs release, its title вЂњis a reference up to a number of fond memories as well as designed ones, like Ricky Wilson to my friendship or the fact we inhabit an abandoned victorian autoharp factory.вЂќ He proceeded вЂњThe way we want to remember, and how thatвЂ™s kind of sad. that we write and rewrite and edit our memories to be a digest version of whatвЂќ f. Guilty. By the albumвЂ™s own measure, then, the genuine test of Halcyon DigestвЂs worth is whether it may nevertheless evoke this type of breathless response all of these years later.
It might very nearly be t perfect if this type of vivid, surreal collection of stone songs made a profound impression and then retreated towards the edge of consciousness, forever flickering into the recesses of our minds, not to be skilled once again.
Such is the situation with concerts like the Deerhunter show I saw in Cleveland a weeks that are few Halcyon Digest dropped. The further I get through the experience, the greater amount of it becomes a legend in my own very own personal history, a transcendent performance that elevated my love of Halcyon Digest to brand new levels. Was it surely therefore euphoric? ItвЂ™s hard to express for certain. The record itself stays readily available, though, it still slaps so I can confirm.
Really, in the beginning, it cracks. Starting track вЂњEarthquakeвЂќ starts by having an almost maddeningly slow electronic beat, a group of thudding depth costs and jarring electronic snare hits with absolutely nothing but wide open silence in between. The vacuum cleaner s n fills with vaporous keyboards and a bleary Cox detailing a startled emergence from slumber вЂњDo you recall getting up/ On a dirty couch in the gray fog/ And the gray dog barking down the road?/ Columns shake your feet beneath the feet.вЂќ He appears like heвЂ™s just getting up himself. But given the fog that is dreamy hangs over most of the record, he could just as effortlessly be heading one other way, drifting down in to the shadowy corners of his subconscious.
What follows is just a trip that is mirage-like DeerhunterвЂ™s record collection in which the ancient very early rock вЂnвЂ™ roll of the вЂ™50s and вЂ™60s blurs as well as вЂ™80s and вЂ™90s indie guitar jams and a galaxy of g d records in between, the whole thing glazed over by having an ambient glimmer common in CoxвЂ™s solo act as Atlas Sound. Upon reviewing Halcyon Digest a decade ago, my Stereogum predecessor Brandon Stosuy sensibly observed that contrary to CoxвЂ™s colorful, boundary-pushing public profile, DeerhunterвЂ™s music had always been more nostalgic than he allows on вЂњHe does a fantastic job reprocessing (and Digesting) the sounds of the past through his or her own collagist aesthetic.вЂќ This was minimal abrasive, most version that is welcoming of aesthetic. Dealing with Merriweather Post Pavilion producer Ben H. Allen for the first-time, the musical organization softened its rangy and quite often aggressive sonic outbursts simply sufficient which they came across as pop of a type without having to sacrifice their mystique.
The ensuing music was intoxicating, like experiencing someone elseвЂ™s rose-colored recollection for the classics. Yet consistent with his reported concept, Cox threaded these songs with depressing and imagery that is sometimes disturbing be it a p r weeping child regarding the ragged and reverb-drenched вЂњDonвЂ™t CryвЂќ or a human trafficking target in the lush and all-consuming digital power ballad вЂњHelicopter.вЂќ A few of the brightest and catchiest moments are the most acerbic Cox serving up sarcasm to an absentee parent in the w zy mind rush вЂњMemory BoyвЂќ and rolling their eyes at clueless industry people amidst the surprisingly Stonesy, sax-skronking вЂњCoronado.вЂќ And on the floaty, kaleidoscopic finale вЂњHe Would Have Laughed,вЂќ Cox tenderly will pay tribute to your late Jay Reatard вЂњIn sweetness comes putting up with,вЂќ he sings, before lamenting, вЂњWhere did my friends get?вЂќ