Deerhoof – Friend Opportunity (2007)

Deerhoof is an experimental pop band whose albums are full of interesting arrangements and out-of-the-way rhythms. Ultimately, though, this album’s downfall is the overabundance of this sort of interesting ideas. Deerhoof has all sorts of good ideas – I’m convinced of that – the problem is that they can’t cut them. Any given song on this album will move between seven or eight different melodic hooks, along with the odd rhythmic qualities for which Deerhoof is known. Any one of these hooks would make for a good song – but eight of them strung end to end make for a frustrating experience.
While Deerhoof might often seem inaccessible, this album gives off the impression that the band is trying to be intentionally so – trying to be inaccessible, pretentious, and obscure merely for the sake of inaccessibility, pretentiousness, and obscurantism. The album does sound like Deerhoof, if Deerhoof drank a couple of French presses full of Yerba Mate and recorded an album in twenty-second spurts of caffeine-fueled composition. If you already like Deerhoof, and have no attention span, pick up this album; if not, try The Runners Four or Apple O’ for a better and much more accessible introduction to one of the more interesting contemporary experimental pop bands.

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