I never really got into Deerhunter, so should I expect to like Bradford Cox’s solo venture Atlas Sound any better? I think the answer, for the moment at least, is a tentative ‘yes’, although please feel free to encourage me further in a Deerhunter direction.
Cox has gone on the record, talking about his new venture as an outlet for ideas that he couldn’t work out with a five-piece band. What this probably means is that he just wanted to have some freedom to mess around in the studio, adding layers of nice fuzzy guitar and other electronic noise(s). Parts of the album Let the Blind Lead Those Who Can See But Cannot Feel sound like what Brian Wilson might have made had he listened to a lot of Sonic Youth. Other parts glide by in a woozy, dreamlike way, but it’s never background music, it’s a little too unsettling for that. Fans of M83 and Animal Collective will find plenty to like here. It’s an album of complexity and depth which I still don’t feel that I’ve fully appreciated yet, but there’s plenty time for that.
Let the Blind… is out in the US now on Kranky. The album gets its UK (and rest of world) proper release on 5 May on 4AD, but you can buy import copies now from Rough Trade.
Atlas Sound is supporting Animal Collective on their upcoming European tour, so get down early if you’re going. I’d be intrigued to see how this record is going to be done live.