Deer Tick: 'Divine Providence'

Photo with no caption

Deer Tick

Divine Providence (Partisan Records)

You’ve been warned. There’s a song on the new Deer Tick album called “Let’s All Go to the Bar,” and it sounds exactly like the title, only worse: the Ramones, but a bit less musical and with even less to say (see: “I don’t care if you puke in my ride/Baby, just as long you take the piss outside”). And Divine Providence, this Rhode Island quintet’s fourth full-length, is jam-packed with this similar bouts of chronic stupidity. On the thumping lead-off “The Bump,” vocalist John McCauley rips off Iggy Pop, begs anyone in earshot for prescription drugs, and mindlessly offers to “take a tree and tear it from its roots.” (I think I’ll pass there, Paul Bunyan.) “Funny Word,” meanwhile, irreverently kicks off with the unnecessary aside, “You f--kin’ douchebag”—I guess only to flaunt, like a gang of detention-bound 13-year-olds, their own translucent “manliness.” Certainly there’s a place in the great halls of rock for Big Dumb Fun. But Deer Tick’s variety is depressingly stupid—Andrew W.K. sounds like a wise revolutionary by comparison.

Hopefully that opening triple-attack-of-terrible won’t scare you away for good—stick around long enough, and you’ll uncover a few modest gems. “Clownin’ Around” is a folky stunner built on intricate harmonies, a lonely organ, and appropriately drunken percussion—they even tuck away a weird little Elephant 6-styled outro for good measure. “Main Street,” a muscular ode about loneliness in the big city, sounds like a top-notch Spoon B-side. But these flashes of clarity are the exception, rather than the rule. “Make my first million from a gas station scratch-off machine,” McCauley blurts at some point or another amid the murky testosterone. My advice: Keep that scratchin’ hand limber.

© 2011 MetroPulse. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Comments » 0

Be the first to post a comment!

Share your thoughts

Comments are the sole responsibility of the person posting them. You agree not to post comments that are off topic, defamatory, obscene, abusive, threatening or an invasion of privacy. Violators may be banned. Click here for our full user agreement.

Comments can be shared on Facebook and Yahoo!. Add both options by connecting your profiles.