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Deerhunter Introduce New Song at Surprise MOMA Show

Bradford Cox

Nearly 24 hours after My Bloody Valentine surprised the nerdisphere with their first recorded material in two decades, Bradford Cox surprised a few hundred audience members at MOMA’s PS1 in New York by taking the stage with Deerhunter. 

Originally billed as a solo performance following the premiere of Youth Museum, a charming, VHS-shot, Grant Singer-directed short film focused “on the physical spaces and everyday life of Cox,” the event took an unexpected turn when members of the long dormant Atlanta ambient punk outfit appeared without their frontman to lock into the ornery beginning of what sounded to be a new song: six-minutes of searing rock’n’roll bookended by over a half hour of relentless, often punishing guitar noise.

Cox, who made his way to the stage from the back of the museum’s dome performance space accompanied by a young assistant wearing a glossy white mask, offered very little in the way of an introduction, either to the previously unheard material or what also seemed to be new personnel at his side. The mercurial, ultra-prolific frontman chose to howl and prowl the lip of the stage instead, leaving his band (which still includes drummer Moses Archuleta and guitarist Lockett Pundt) to unfurl layer upon layer of deafening guitar squall long after he exited the room just as theatrically as he entered. And as the rest of the band followed him, 15-20 minutes later, a few dozen audience members lingered to continue listening to those loops of noise they’d left to unravel on their own.