How to write a Deerhunter review in 300 words or less

Clocking in at approximately 100 words, my review of Deerhunter’s Microcastle for TimeOut Amsterdam was altered slightly in the final version but that’s to be expected. If anything the editors’ additions and alterations improved the piece.

In the spirit of loving kindness, here’s a brief tutorial entitled “How to write a Deerhunter review in 300 words or less”. I’ll be showing you how to write not just a 100 word record review but also a 200, and a 300 word record review.

For those of you wishing to write a 400 or 500 word record review the instructions are even simpler: just add an extra hundie or two hundie review chunk, to taste.

You are hereby free to copy and paste and otherwise mash up these text chunks, and I would love to hear about it should you manage to get one of them published in The Age. LOL. I’m using Deerhunter‘s Microcastle as a template which can be applied easily to any other band (a quick ‘find and replace’ should do the trick, as we shall see). Emphasis added.

THE ONE HUNDIE WORD DEERHUNTER REVIEW


Deerhunter
‘Microcastle’ / ‘Weird Era Cont.’ | 2xLP | 2008 | Kranky/4AD

Atlanta, Georgia ‘ambient punk’ outfit Deerhunter impressed [us] last year with the eerie Cryptograms LP, and the results of the punishing touring schedule they undertook to promote that album show on this surprisingly-upbeat follow-up. The band’s much-improved chops are on display in ‘Never Stops’ and the delirious ‘Nothing Ever Happened’. Lead singer Bradford [sic] Cox continues to wear his pop influences proudly, introducing a triumphant Breeders vibe to the title track, while ‘Agoraphobia’ is pure VU. While the beautiful ‘Green Jacket’ demonstrates the band’s affinity with [their folk-psych heroes] Animal Collective, the melodrama is occasionally stifling (see ‘Calvary Scars’ for a maudlin example) – 4/6.

THE TWO HUNDIE WORD DEERHUNTER REVIEW

deerhunter-microcastle
Deerhunter
‘Microcastle’ / ‘Weird Era Cont.’ | 2xLP | 2008 | Kranky/4AD

Atlanta, Georgia’s [self-described] ‚Äòambient punk’ outfit Deerhunter impressed [some and turned off others] last year with their eerie [and claustrophobic second LP] Cryptograms. Whatever your opinion, the positive influence of the punishing touring schedule the band undertook to promote that album is demonstrated by this surprisingly-upbeat follow-up. [Guitarist Name Please’s] much-improved chops are on display in [the neo-Police robo-stomp of ] ‚ÄòNever Stops’ and the delirious ‚ÄòNothing Ever Happened’ goes on only a minute too long (a criticism that could also be leveled at the band’s take on Jay Reatard’s ‚ÄòOh It’s Such A Shame’). Nevertheless, notably outrageous lead singer [and quasi-Internet media personality] Brandford Cox and his bandmates continue to wear [their] pop influences proudly, opening the album with the Flaming Lips by numbers ‚ÄòCover Me (Slowly)’ introducing a triumphant Breeders vibe to the title track, before launching into slow-burner ‚ÄòAgoraphobia’ [sung by Name Please] whose vocal is pure [Velvet Underground]. Elsewhere the beautiful [ambient soundscape of ] ‚ÄòGreen Jacket’ demonstrates the band’s affinity with their folk-psych [tape-hiss] heroes Animal Collective. The melodrama is occasionally stifling – see ‚ÄòCalvary Scars’ for a maudlin example – but fans of this brand of aural spookiness might also want to check out Cox’s solo project, Atlas Sound, online. 4/6.

THE THREE HUNDIE WORD DEERHUNTER REVIEW

deerhunter-microcastle
Deerhunter
‘Microcastle’ / ‘Weird Era Cont.’ | 2xLP | 2008 | Kranky/4AD

Atlanta, Georgia’s [self-described] ‚Äòambient punk’ outfit Deerhunter impressed [some and turned off others] in 2007 with their eerie [and claustrophobically-intense second LP] Cryptograms, despite its strongest tracks, the ethereal ‘Strange Lights’ and the astonishingly bent ‘Spring Hall Convert’ suggesting a pop heart beating beneath the shards of tape-looped noise. Whatever your opinion of the band’s shambolic stylings, the positive discipline of a year’s worth of touring to promote Cryptograms shows on the welcome and surprisingly-upbeat follow-up, Microcastle (released together with a faux-Pavement second disc entitled ‘Weird Era Cont.’. Moses Archuleta’s much-improved chops are on display in [the neo-Police robo-stomp of ] ‚ÄòNever Stops’ and the delirious ‚ÄòNothing Ever Happened’ goes on only a minute too long (a criticism that could also be leveled at the band’s take on Jay Reatard’s ‚ÄòOh It’s Such A Shame’, an otherwise excellent cover of a very different song). Nevertheless, notably outrageous lead singer [and quasi-Internet media personality] Brandford Cox and his bandmates continue to wear [their] pop influences proudly, opening the album with the Flaming Lips by numbers ‚ÄòCover Me (Slowly)’ introducing a triumphant Breeders vibe to the title track, before launching into slow-burner ‚ÄòAgoraphobia’ [sung by Name Please] whose vocal is pure [Velvet Underground]. Elsewhere the beautiful [ambient soundscape of ] ‚ÄòGreen Jacket’ demonstrates the band’s affinity with their folk-psych [tape-hiss] heroes Animal Collective, whose recent Merriweather Post Pavilion defies even our expectations. The melodrama is occasionally stifling – see ‚ÄòCalvary Scars’ for a maudlin example – but must be seen in the context of the band’s fragmented (and often heart-rending) collective past. Ghost rock for the Internet’s anonymous? Who knows. Fans of this lo-fi brand of aural spookiness might also want to check out Brandford Cox’s solo project, Atlas Sound, freely available online. 8/10.

3 Replies to “How to write a Deerhunter review in 300 words or less”

  1. Does 4/6 equal 8/10? Maybe it got better the more you listened to it. Cordite’s looking lovely. The haiku are in blossom. Are you still in Amsterdam? I was listening to Jacques Brel singing “The Amsterdam Song” the other day and thought of you. Nice work if you can get it. Hope you are having fun, I’m off to storm the Temple Of John Kinsella and lay waste to the Overland blog. Have a fantabulous day.

  2. Davey, hello. I am thinking of writing an article for Cordite. So far I only have the title.
    “Is John Kinsella the Anthony Robbins Poetry?”
    I can’t get any further than that cos it kind of says it all. Should I bother fleshing it out for Cordite?

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