Deerhoof: Friend Opportunity

Posted on February 7, 2007 Under Music

I’ve been sitting at the keyboard for the last 10 minutes trying to put the Deerhoof experience into words. Let’s start with the basics. In 1991, Greg Saunier joins a goth/metal band in San Francisco and a series of events not atypical of many band biographies, Deerhoof is formed. Saunier and bassist Rob Fisk quickly make a name for themselves in music circles as weird and eccentric musicians, even for the indie scene. Later, they meet the final member of their band, a recent transplant from Tokyo with no musical experience whatsoever, Satomi Matsuzaki. The rest, as they say, is history.

The first thing you notice after popping in their latest album, “Friend Opportunity,” is Matsuzaki’s distinctive cutesey Japanese voice. I was troubled at first because the music is stop and go, with pauses or transitions in unexpected places. Like when one of your favorite songs is on the radio and you are singing along only to be interrupted by loops or scratches and it turns out to be a remix. The music is so well done though, and so creative with interwoven symphonic compositions and sounds I still can’t identify, that you soon forgive any notion of ill-timed breaks. Pick up “Friend Opportunity” today, put it in your car CD player (or iPod), and start counting the seconds before a passenger asks you about it.