Deerhoof – Breakup Song
Eleven albums in, Deerhoof inhabit something of a paradox: they manage to be both predictable and unpredictable simultaneously. They remain wildly imaginative, their messy musical palette evincing a giddy disregard for convention. But at the same time, they’ve executed sharp left turns for so long that swerves have become their hallmark, rendering Breakup Song idiosyncratically familiar, despite its unfamiliar components. Thankfully, it’s not as confusing as it sounds, thanks to the quartet’s evergreen qualities: exuberance, innovation and a keen sense of fun.
While the syncopated polyrhythms present a challenge, dancing is encouraged by the title track’s juddering melody and the samba horns of The Trouble With Candyhands, while Zero Seconds Pause sees Satomi Matsuzaki extend a more direct invitation (“Now I am going dancing / If you would care to join me?”). To paraphrase another track title, Deerhoof Do Parties, and they do it well. Unburdened by rules or expectations, they remain free to be themselves unreservedly, to everyone’s benefit.