Saturday 19 Apr
CD reviews

Dustin Prinz - Eleven

Few musicians take the time to master their instrument in the way that Oklahoma City singer-songwriter Dustin Prinz has; he’s a guitar virtuoso in every sense of the word, and Eleven gives him the chance to show just how far he can push that skill.
04/15/2014 | Comments 0

Horse Thief – Fear in Bliss

Listening to Horse Thief’s previous release — the haphazardly melodramatic Grow Deep, Grow Wild — felt like a chore. Whatever potential the Oklahoma City folk-pop act demonstrated on the EP was obscured behind a formulaic, contrived and ultimately hollow cloud. But it at least offered a glimmer of promise for a band consisting of, frankly, five pretty talented dudes. Critics saw it; the band’s management saw it; its current label, Bella Union, saw it; and its increasingly fervid fan base saw it.
04/08/2014 | Comments 0

Colourmusic — May You Marry Rich

There’s always a sense of danger when debuting songs in a live setting and playing them well. Without having heard the studio versions, expectations are set according to the live incarnations. But capturing the breadth of free-flowing atmosphere and sheer volume on a disc, vinyl or digital file isn’t the easiest thing to do, especially for a band as vociferous as Colourmusic.
04/01/2014 | Comments 0

Em and the MotherSuperiors — Churches into Theaters

As titles go, Churches into Theaters is an apt descriptor for the debut album from Oklahoma City rockers Em and the MotherSuperiors. It’s a reverential record, one that shares the gospel of classic rock, blues and soul but embraces the need to refashion it for modern times, channeling The Dead Weather, Grace Potter and Cage the Elephant along the way.
03/25/2014 | Comments 0

Rachel Brashear — Revolution

Rachel Brashear’s second EP, Revolution, starts with a kick to the shins.
03/18/2014 | Comments 0

SXSW: Buffalo Lounge: Deerpeople

Everything, pinballing at warp speed

By Stephen Carradini March 13th, 2012

Deerpeople, with audience participation on maracas.
Credits: Stephen Carradini

Several times a set, the lead singer of Deerpeople will descend into the audience, contort his body so that his shoulder is aimed at the audience like a battering ram, then throw himself at people. It looks bizarre, because it is far more calculated that most moshing: it looks a lot like a drunken stagger, but it's done for a very particular result.

It's a perfect analogy for Deerpeople's music. Their music encompasses piano-pop, dance-rock, indie-rock and acoustic instruments (violin, accordion) into an ever-evolving mishmash that attacks the audience. The stops and starts of Deerpeople's songs are jarring, but intentionally so: the vocals are often harsh, but for effect. Deerpeople is in the business of making wholes out of things that are usually not whole. This conceptual framework is what the best bands do today: they don't just mash up genres, they make consistent things out of lots of pieces of other things. Deerpeople doesn't have a genre, and that's to the better for the listener. It's way more fun to listen to them, because there's a turn around every corner.

It also helped that the Buffalo Lounge was a hometown crowd, and Deerpeople are on the brink of major success. (The band has somewhere between 7 and 12 shows to play this SXSW, and that's an easy indicator that a lot of people are listening to what Deerpeople's doing.) This was a victory lap before the hard work of SXSW comes, and they enjoyed it for all it was worth. The band interacted with the fans, the fans sung along, the band smiled. It was a festive atmosphere, which only enhanced the jubilation of the tunes.

Deerpeople are onto something big with their ideas: you should check them out before they don't play around here that often anymore. They're from Stillwater, so I'm putting them in the Other Lives/Colourmusic category at the moment: Band Most Likely to Not Have to Play SXSW Next Year Due To Being Famous. 
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
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