Dan Deacon/ Future Islands' 7-inch Split | Record Review | Indy Week
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Dan Deacon/ Future Islands' 7-inch Split 

(307 Knox Records)

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This seven-inch purple platter split between Baltimore kaleidoscopic electronicist Dan Deacon and Baltimore-via-Greenville New Wave revivalists Future Islands commences The Great Vinyl Project, a series of wax-only output from Durham label 307 Knox. Take it as a harbinger of diversity to come, as these two sides could barely be more distinct: Deacon—a longtime figurehead in his city's cheap-rent, prankster-art scene—divides his half into five short, mirthful tracks, connected to one another and to much of his back catalog only by their sense of humor. "Mark Brown" locks high glitches into thin drums for a two-minute chromatic dance burst, while "Shoe Faces" is a free association monologue about shoelaces, propositions and pussycat hats. On "Silver Bells," Deacon reinterprets the Christmas classic by splitting the melody between a sampled-and-sequenced church choir, dog barks, cat purrs and duck quacks. Come December, look for it on everyone's Muxtape.

Future Islands gets the upper hand, though, with an alternate version of "Follow You," a track included on the band's 2006 self-released EP, Little Advances. This version is simpler, letting frontman Sam Herring—for my money, the Baby Huey of this indie rock shit—explain his stalker obsession above a simple drum machine march and a chiming synthesizer melody. Herring always sounds like he's running out of breath while recording the last song he will ever sing. Juxtaposed both with Deacon's fun and games on the flip and his own band's playful little dance groove, it's a perfect splash of water in the face.

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I'm all in on this album. Love the sound, love Amelia's soaring vocals. She brings a humanizing element to electronic …

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