Crivens! There’s been some lengthy articles on this site of late. Words about music – because that’s why we’re here. Except that recent collections have seen the verbiage grow like particularly pernicious rhododendron; word-counts well into four digits, the swelling adjective behind record obsession. What’s the consensus? Do we prefer our sonic snippets bright and breezy – succinct and to the point – or overblown pieces that stink out the joint like an Emerson, Lake and Palmer triple album?
Below the words, and mirroring the turntable’s choice of record of late, two tracks by New Jersey band deardarkhead. Back when it was young and uncynical and we could remember when it was all fields round here, this blog featured some regular juxtaposition of shoegaze track (usually obscure, often Greek or Nebraskan or from the wilds of Patagonia) and a sort of vague, cosmological reference point – snapshots of Jovian moons, paeans to the Oort Cloud, that kinda thing. I’m guessing that the premise was along the lines of complementary concepts; on one hand: the rich, dreamy, far away quality that in many ways defines the whole shoegaze/dreampop axis; on the other: the stark, profound beauty of literal, grand scale otherworldliness. It’s a linked sense of awe, the timbre behind single or album as rocket fuel for the listening experience (headphones on, wine poured, lying on the floorboards ’til 3am – you know the drill).
Or is it only me who can think of no finer listening material when in a degrading orbit around Enceladus than a Slowdive record, or some such?
Whatever; it’s this trope of imagination extrapolation that deardarkhead slot neatly into. Tipped off about the back catalogue from one of those Twitter things, the late night vinyl order was telexed to NYC, and then: wow… a going concern since the late ’80’s, it’s the compilation album Oceanside, representing their 1991-93 vintage in which the density of sound concatenates empirically.
There’s the real risk when discussing this type of music that the same old suites of adjective will be trotted out, festooned like bunting between our façades of evocation. That inducement of swoon, endorsement of swoon, textures hewn from the pedal board in wave after sumptuous wave. And perhaps this form of over-wordy categorization is not strictly apt in this circumstance – any band extant since 1988 is guaranteed to evolve their aesthetic if they’re to remain even vaguely interesting – further attested to in changes of line-up. But still – that zing, that crashing call of space…
deardarkhead / Auburn
deardarkhead / Just For You