Gauntlet Hair, 'Gauntlet Hair' (Dead Oceans)

Gauntlet Hair
Critical Mass
Release Date: October 18, 2011
Label: Dead Oceans

by Josh Modell

This horribly named duo's towering pop songs are buried so deep in reverberating juju that it's sometimes hard to follow them. But like obvious touchstones Yeasayer (pre-Erasure fixation) and Animal Collective (the more accessible years), the tribal rhythms and dissonance ultimately help make the melodies sound sweeter. Deep digging isn't required on "Top Bunk," which sounds like Band of Horses on (stronger) psychedelics; but a track like "That's Your Call" -- with its long, distorted drum break giving way to skipping, faraway soul -- requires more patience. Rub your eyes really hard to add the appropriate light show.

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