deadCAT is a band that sounds as strange as their name is. They implement some simple yet creative instrumentation and a myriad of brainwashing melodies. They balance structure and absurdity. Simply put, deadCAT is a band from Atlanta, Georgia who make some great music. For 2013, they have some brand new music on a brand new album called Transientualism. Without a doubt fans will love it, and new listeners are about to find some brand new talent.
Transientualism is confusing, intense, and really glitchy sounding –super cool. Beyond this point, it becomes incredibly difficult to give any real objective criticism, and any subjective criticism will end up deserving it’s own critique. Truth be told, deadCAT’s newest album is in a league of it’s own. The band plays a slew of songs that are so unique they can’t really be compared against anything else, and yet their music is so familiar sounding it’s impossible to call them groundbreaking. It’s sort of best to just sit back, stare at your feet, and listen.
When Transientualism first kicks off, you’re kind of stuck with a Déjà vu feeling. “Glossolalia” is a great way to start such a wild album. The feeling of familiarity creates an eerie atmosphere while the distant, haunting vocals and synth chords seemingly distort reality. The entire song is hypnotic in a way, repeating melodies coupled with a rhythmic drum beat capture your attention and toss you into the fray of Transientualism. When the transition into the next song comes along, it’s a sudden jump that almost takes away from the entire experience. But, “Eggs’ At Roach Denny’s” quickly pulls you back in with glitchy synth notes and a whacky bass line that feels like it belongs in some giant monster movie. The band really pushes the noise aspect of their music in a friendly manner; it’s hectic enough to be interesting, yet tame enough to be enjoyable.
On the other hand, it seems as though with each song that goes by, the band gets a little more structured. “Cents” has a flowing vocal melody and some accompanying bass notes. There isn’t any real moment that makes you say, “Oh God, what am I listening to?” This is both a blessing and a curse. deadCAT sound like a synthesizer about to blow up, and they tend to sound great in the process. It’s dirty, the first few songs of Transientualism you don’t want to like because it goes against everything you know about music, but it’s just so good. Then as you progress through, that charm disappears for something a little more safe. “Feed,” is by far the best and worst album of the album. You want it to have that same ambient dissonance paired with random bleeps and bloops, but it just doesn’t. Instead, “Feed,” comes with a perpetual synth melody and one of the more enticing drum beats I’ve heard. The vocals are fairly kind to the ears as well, and it’s a great song. When the ninth track, “Mustard Tiger,”starts to play, you’re left with a similar upbeat feeling that requires just a bit of that original, opening noise. But still, “Mustard Tiger” is super chill, it’s the kind of song you can just kind of listen to and feel good. It doesn’t use any kind of in-your-face melodies or some sort of cheap gimmick, it’s just good.
Overall, deadCAT falls into a weird place. They’re not quite noise nor psychedelic or any of that. They’re just plain good, and Transientualism is some good music. There isn’t much to really complain about, but don’t expect anything awe-inspiring. None the less, the album is a great listen. Not everybody is going to be a fan of deadCAT’s latest album, but they should at least give it a shot.
MP3: deadCAT “Feed”