Just when I was thinking that Richard Thompson’s plan to release two new albums simultaneously was a unique move for an artist to make, the celebrated Providence, RI quartet Deer Tick have gone and done the same.
Unlike Thompson’s acoustic covers and rarities, they have taken it all a stage further by releasing two separate albums of original material (their first in four years), Deer Tick Vol. 1 and Deer Tick Vol. Both are to be released on Partisan Records and were recorded at Ardent Studios in Memphis, TN.
The two albums complement each other yet reflect completely contrasting styles, both of which accurately represent the two distinctive musical personalities of Deer Tick — quiet and thoughtful/loud and raucous.
And to back up that statement they have revealed two contrasting tracks. From the quiet and thoughtful comes Sea of Clouds
and from the raucous, the garage punk infused It’s a Whale
The press release revealed that Deer Tick Vol. 1 showcases the folk-driven, roots/rock style with right amount of grit, that Deer Tick is known for. Lead singer/songwriter John McCauley is a masterful introspective and observational songwriter, who documents inner struggles and external conflicts with a perfect balance of heartfelt sincerity and wry wit. The opening track “Sea of Clouds” encompasses all of what brought so many fans to Deer Tick in the first place, and also what kept them there. Guitarist Ian O’Neil’s “Hope is Big” and drummer Dennis Ryan’s “Me & My Man” expand on the group’s already dynamic range.
Deer Tick Vol. 1 Tracklisting
01. Sea of Clouds
02. Card House
03. Doomed from the Start
04. Hope is Big
05. Only Love
07. Me and My Man
08. End of the World
09. Limp Right Back
On Deer Tick Vol. 2, the band turns it up and lets it fly with an injection of punk-inspired garage rock at it’s finest. Clever lyrics, infectious hooks and captivating melodies pack Vol. 2 with bassist Christopher Ryan skillfully laying it down with authority and attitude. The propulsion of opener “Don’t Hurt”, edgy pop of “Jumpstarting” and rowdy punk of “It’s a Whale” reveal that there was an obvious Jekyll & Hyde approach to recording Vol. 1 & Vol. 2. Vol. 2 closes with boisterous “Mr. Nothing Gets Worse”, with all three singers taking a verse on a song that would have made The Replacements proud.
Deer Tick Vol. 2 Tracklisting
01. Don’t Hurt
03. Look How Clean I Am
04. It’s a Whale
05. Tiny Fortunes
10. Mr. Nothing Gets Worse
Both albums are to be released via Partisan on 15 Septemeber 2017 and are available to pre-order here and there is also a Pledge Campaign which includes signed vinyl test pressings, handwritten lyric sheets, customised Chuck Taylor converse boots and more.
Deer Tick defines the term outlier. Their ever-evolving style has never been claimed by any one scene or genre. They encompass key elements of indie-rock, country, punk, pop, Americana, folk and so much more, which is what makes it difficult to nail them down. With Deer Tick Vol. 1 and Deer Tick Vol. 2, the question really is, why would anyone want to?