Live Review: Deerhoof

The Middle East // Cambridge, MA // February 3

Deerhoof’s set began with a roll of tape; a series of cables being strapped to the floor and pedals arranged in their habitual order. A completely noise-less and animated 15 minutes, when 500 brains in the Middle East downstairs were still somewhat in tact. What would follow would be something completely out of orbit and unnatural; a structure of songs that were hyper real, producing an overall feeling that doesn’t exist without the band, Deerhoof.

They opened up with “Dummy Discards A Heart,” the first track from their 2003 album Apple O’. Girls and guys up front had their bellies on the stage, sweating, heads banging, grabbing onto their hair, onto each other and filling themselves up with the insane notes of Deerhoof. All of the songs, a number of which came from their recent release Deerhoof vs. Evil, were tightly rehearsed, heavy and noisy. A Deerhoof show is witnessing a crowd full of people experiencing something entirely authentic. The most beautiful aspect being that nobody knows what’s happening, because it’s too good to understand.

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Deerhoof interrupted their set s drummer Greg Saunier stood up to thank the other bands and to show off his pant legs soaked in sweat. It’s safe to assume that those in attendance were left feeling strange after the show concluded. A feeling that was less like a headache and more like a divine experience, making it difficult to drive home.


-Larry Owen


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