On January 8 at Atlanta’s Variety Playhouse, the maverick Georgia band demonstrated why it is unquestionably one of the best in the entire country.
PHOTOS / TEXT BY JOHN BOYDSTON
Is Deerhunter the coolest band in the world? Of course. Bradford Cox a guitar god? Come on! Sold out theater full of ecstatic fans during this Atlanta show? Absolutely, and ditto the next night down the road in Athens at The Georgia Theater.
Deerhunter wrapped up its 2015 tour in support of their highly acclaimed ‘Fading Frontier’ (4AD) LP with a couple of knockout shows in North Georgia, where it all started for Bradford Cox in 2001 and a rotating cast of members over the years, tours, and records. All on a steady if bumpy path to creative peaks and fame.
Deerhunter since 2012 is L-R Cox, Moses Archuleta (drums), Josh McKay (bass) and Locket Pundt (guitar, keys, & vocals).
I’m a fairly recent convert to the band’s music but have been devouring their vinyl as fast as I can find it, and was glad to finally see them live. They do not disappoint. I would have guessed they might close with the strong hypnotic rocker “Desire Lines”; but no, they opened with that piece of magic, and laid into one great song after another from their vast catalogue, the crowd loving every minute. Bradford announced his parents and his dog were in the hometown crowd, trying in vain to get the latter to come up and take a bow.
‘Fading Frontier’ made many critics best of 2015 lists, including Pitchfork, Paste, Buzzfeed, Vogue, and SPIN.
So far the only show scheduled for 2016 is Coachella. But I am told there could be more shows scheduled so follow these guys on Facebook (close to 170,000 fans there) or http://deerhuntermusic.com/.
Setlists for their 2015 dates starting with this Atlanta show are here: http://www.setlist.fm/setlist/deerhunter/2016/variety-playhouse-atlanta-ga-23f24017.html.