How do Gear Gods readers feel about Deafheaven? One of the most divisive bands in modern metal, their profile has risen increasingly since they dropped Sunbather in 2013. As metal fans are wont to do, they complained about the pink cover art, the fact that the dudes look like they read Jack Kerouac, and because Pitchfork has basically been riding their D nonstop since that album came out.
Deafheaven are interesting though, and one of the major players in the growing scene of American black metal, that to me embodies the same sort of spirit that post-punk had in contrast to 70’s punk and glam rock. There’s something inherently iconoclastic about bands like Deafheaven, Sannhet, and Vattnet Viskar for the genre umbrellas they fall under, in that they don’t really look or sound anything like black metal, but they also can’t quite be called anything else.
All that aside, I think Sunbather is a good album. Not quite the masterpiece that a lot of critics and the press want it to be – it’s a bit long, they play many of the same stylistic moves and tricks over and over – but it’s still a good album. So I am curious to see how they develop on their upcoming record, New Bermuda, due out in October. Once again, they recorded with producer-engineer Jack Shirley, one of modern metal’s finest knob-twiddlers, at 25th Street Recording and East Palo Alto’s Atomic Garden Recording.
The band have released a brief teaser trailer for the album, which includes just a tiny snippet of them in the studio. Enough to whet the whistles of fans, for sure. Check it out: