DEFORMO ARE ARTSY-FARTSY enough to stink up an airplane hangar. Their wigged-out singer yelps and croons like a caffeinated Ned Flanders; their catchiest song is an anti-Anglophile anthem (complete with Fall dis); and their shamelessly arty guitar jags openly pay homage to brain-rock gurus Thinking Fellers Union Local 282. After a dozen spins through their debut EP, I felt cheated they didn't have the guts to go the school-rock distance and drop a Rilke reference. (Hell, maybe they did.) In short, Babyface need not watch his back.
That said, I love 'em. Now on listen 16, I'm smitten--by the children's-song-on-valium "What's His Name," the convoluted call to arms "Mr. Saturday Night," and the surfy space-rocker "East Cost." I'm also convinced that the first two minutes of the yowling rave-up "Not In the Workplace" are as nifty as indie rock can get (and a lot more fun than most Thinking Fellers Union tracks, too). And while I'll admit that they lack songwriting chops as such, I'll let that slide in lieu of the fact that they play a style of art rock that doesn't necessarily require them. And while it should be noted that they also lack anything remotely resembling a constructive critique of the postgrad world they've found themselves shambling through, I'll make room for that too because, frankly, I don't have one either.
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