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Cryptograms


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Audio CD, February 6, 2007
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Amazon's Deerhunter Store

Music

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Videos

Deerhunter - "Memory Boy"

Biography

Deerhunter is an American four-piece indie rock group originating from Atlanta, Georgia. The band, consisting of Bradford Cox, Moses Archuleta, Josh Fauver, and Lockett Pundt, have described themselves as "ambient punk," though they incorporate a wide range of genres, including noise rock, art rock, shoegaze, and post-punk, as well significant pop elements.
The band was co-founded ... Read more in Amazon's Deerhunter Store

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for 7 albums, 6 photos, videos, and 1 full streaming song.


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Cryptograms + Microcastle [Vinyl] + Halcyon Digest
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (February 6, 2007)
  • Original Release Date: January 1, 2007
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Kranky
  • ASIN: B000LC51WO
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #162,214 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Intro
2. Cryptograms
3. White Ink
4. Lake Somerset
5. Providence
6. Octet
7. Red Ink
8. Spring Hall Convert
9. Strange Lights
10. Hazel St
11. Tape Hiss Orchid
12. Heatherwood

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

The second full-length outing from Atlanta's DEERHUNTER, and their first for Kranky. Twelve tracks recorded during two very different one-day sessions that explore the hypnotic states induced by ambient and minimalist music via the klang and propulsion of garage rock. "...a massive, psych-heavy, art-damaged five-piece, and one of the most inspired new bands we've heard in quite a while. Deerhunter's forthcoming Kranky debut is likely to make them one of the most talked-about bands of 2007

Amazon.com

Deerhunter's artsy second full-length record is about contrast; dissonant but melodic, loud and bold yet dreamy and peaceful. Like Spiritualized on a bad trip, the first half is noisy, moody, and mostly instrumental except for Bradford Cox's occasional, heavily distorted sing-talking. But it shifts gears on "Spring Hall Convert" when the music lightens into lo-fi shoegazer pop. Elsewhere you'll find clanging punk, drone rock, and minimalist psychedelia. Sounds like a disjointed experience, right? Well, yeah, it is somewhat, but stay with it. After a few listens you'll hear the consistent sonic smarts that unify the record's wandering tone. The title track for instance comes off like watered-down Joy Division until the feedback kicks in, and the giant guitar blare sets off a charging momentum. A song like "Hazel St." has a goofier appeal, with its slightly awkward intro and loopy melodies. But there's nothing awkward about how the song generously unfolds so that by the end, the only thing goofy is the grin on your face. Such dynamism makes you wish they'd take a little more time in the studio to smooth out some of the record's rough edges, but then again, does the world need another glossy, over-produced record? Enjoy Cryptograms for its messy and scattered charm as well as its deceptively complex intelligence. --Matthew Cooke

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
5 star
33%
4 star
56%
3 star
11%
2 star
0%
1 star
0%
See all 9 customer reviews
So I guess if I have to stress one thing, it's the incomparable sincerity with which these guys make their music.
Amazon Customer
I admire artists who have been able to elevate their music above language, and the albums most dear to me have rendered me dumb and hopeless to explain their power.
Mike Newmark
While the latter features mostly songs that are more structured in rock and pop elements (and beautifully so), "Cryptograms" is dream music.
John W. Evans

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

32 of 36 people found the following review helpful By Mike Newmark on June 6, 2007
Format: Audio CD
Maybe this will damage my credibility as a music journalist, but I believe that the best music can't be described in words. I admire artists who have been able to elevate their music above language, and the albums most dear to me have rendered me dumb and hopeless to explain their power.

I was in no way prepared for Deerhunter's staggering, brain-melting Cryptograms, not even slightly. I knew a bit about Deerhunter before taking the plunge: that they hailed from the indie rock no-man's-land of Atlanta, that they've opened for the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, and that they released an inconsequential dance-punk record that few people cared about. What I didn't know was that they carried with them a tempestuous history involving psychological atrophy, overmedication and the death of their original bassist. Such distressing circumstances clearly inform Cryptograms, but they don't account for how a rock record can sound like nothing else on this planet, or how something so conceptually aversive can also be unspeakably beautiful, or how listening to it for the hundredth time still leaves me stunned and speechless in its tracks.

The first half of Cryptograms was recorded in one day under extreme duress, after the band tried and failed several times to get anything worthwhile on tape. Panic attacks and breakdowns were common during these sessions, but if the band members had to strain themselves to the brink of self-destruction to achieve the album's epic sprawl, then so be it. After a nervy introduction, the oblique title track blazes onto the scene with invigorating force, boasting a lean guitar-bass interaction that turns dance-punk on its silly, ironic head. Next comes "White In," which is just strummed guitar chords running through a delay.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on June 28, 2009
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
For an avid listener of all kinds of music, there is no doubt that pop/rock music can be the most aggravating of all, as hordes of posing kids with dreams of the rock'n'roll trifecta are crafted into overnight successes by record execs who flood the market with their substandard drivel. The recent "indie" movement, as many call it, has provided a good deal of relief from this epidemic, not least in the form of Atlanta, GA band Deerhunter.
I picked up this album on a recommendation, having never heard them before. What happened after I listened I cannot describe. I felt a connection with this music like I had never felt before. After watching a few interviews with Mr. Cox, I understood why. Bradford is a very sincere and unpretentious guy, devoid of the usual trappings of ego and excess that most frontmen suffer, who understands that it's more important to put a lot of heart into your music than a lot of thought. How many technically amazing artists fail to move people to feel anything but being briefly in awe of their prowess? Contrarily, there is nothing musically amazing about this album, in the technical sense. Typical rock structures and 4 to the floor rhythms dominate, but they pulse with an energy and life few musicians of any caliber can ever hope to attain. It is amazing how much of a difference the WAY someone strums a few chords or plays a simple beat can affect its power. There is something indescribably beautiful in the touch of these musicians, and their choice of sparing chords and melodies is haunting, enchanting, lilting, and at times disturbing.. it is whatever they want it to be.
This particular album plays out like a death-bed sequence.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Christian Walker on February 25, 2007
Format: Audio CD
at first listen cryptograms is a strange muddle of shoegaze/postpunk/psyche/pop insanity. at times the listener will require much patience. but push on, savor the immediate, make the connections to some favorites like joy division for instance (track 2 is a gimmie). you will be rewarded for sure.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Mr. Thistle on July 11, 2007
Format: Audio CD
Anyone who has heard even a moderate amount of the praise spewing forth for Deerhunter's sophomore album, Cryptograms, is in for a let down; at least initially. At least I am speaking for myself (as always). Released by the almost incomparably high standards and consistency of Chicago based Kranky label, Cryptograms is an oxymoron of sorts. Marrying early 90s indie rock with their new label's penchant for experimental, ambient ear candy, the theory of Deerhunter's sound is a marvelous one. However, my first listen was like getting punched in the face. After an almost Kranky required minimalist instrumental intro Deerhunter crushes your preconceived ideas of lilting and inspiring melodies with a garage of course unadulterated rock. For a couple of weeks I couldn't get past the first few songs. The one day I pushed my way through to the last have of Cryptograms to find that the hardnosed beginning morphed into a wonderfully satisfying shoegazer pop. Interspersed with several ambient instrumental tracks throughout the album, it is only as a whole that Deerhunter's Cryptograms can be appreciated and subsequently dissected into individual songs for one-off enjoyments. Cryptograms is, in my opinion the true grower album of 2007. The accolades can now be verified as accurate. Seriously, I love the first half of the album now as much as the last. The context has somehow opened up the entire album like a vision. Do not sleep on Cryptograms, this is one of the better album indie rock albums you're likely to find this year.
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what?
To music reviewers, anything that can be described as "dreamy" (if the guitars have that sort of outdoors-y echo sound) and the music is "wandering" (which means that it slows down sometimes, and plays some notes, like most music does), then it sounds like Joy Division. To us,... Read More
Apr 16, 2007 by KWhite |  See all 3 posts
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