Lotus Plaza
Spooky Action At A Distance


4.0
excellent

Review

by joplinpicasso USER (3 Reviews)
April 12th, 2012 | 15 replies


Release Date: 2012 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Deerhunter's stoic guitarist finally dreams with a stronger voice.

With the positive reception his main band continually receives and an upcoming wedding this year, it comes as no surprise that Deerhunter guitarist and sometimes frontman Lockett Pundt found the ambition and voice to craft a dream-rock experience as rich and rewarding as Spooky Action at a Distance, his second effort as Lotus Plaza.

His solo moniker’s debut, The Floodlight Collective, featured nostalgic sentiments obscured beneath hazy tones and grooves, but Pundt’s own Deerhunter tunes such as “Neither of Us, Uncertainly” have always acted as stoic counterbalance to the more theatrical punk sensibilities of bandmate and friend Bradford Cox. On Spooky Action at a Distance, a title arising from his love of astrophysics, Pundt’s exquisite entanglements of vivid pop, lucid electronics, and straight-up rock and roll demand to be heard.

Singing, “Walls closing all around,” on the frantic “Strangers”, Pundt recalls the urgency of his own “Desire Lines”, albeit with lyrics akin to those he sang on Microcastle’s “Agoraphobia” (clearly, a man fearful of losing connection). The acoustic, minor-to-major strumming in “Dusty Rhodes”, on the other hand, may be the most romantic moment of Pundt’s musical career so far and one of the sweetest in the Deerhunter-related catalog. His soaring (well, sort of) vocals on “Monoliths” and “Eveningness” are amplified by triumphant snare hits and playground guitar loops that will undoubtedly sound familiar to fans of Deerhunter’s loop-heavy live “Helicopter” medley.

Whereas his voice acted as another instrument on Floodlight, oozing through songs like molten lava, here Pundt’s low-range drawl becomes a driving characteristic, both quotable and hummable. Some who prefer Deerhunter’s more ambient work might cry out, but both Pundt’s and Cox’s recent work feature songwriters truly awakening their musical personas. Spooky Action almost works as a concept album about escaping and finding yourself, but all of Pundt’s creations play as soundtracks to personal discovery and tempered meditation.

With imagery of beaches, airliners, and cliffs, Pundt takes his travels, both in reality and dreams, and mines yearning emotions out of them. “Jet Out of the Tundra”, the crowning moment here, unfolds much like the droning “Antoine” on Floodlight, inhabited with Echo & the Bunnymen bass lines, tender major-7th chords that enter the stratosphere, and cutting lyrics about an uncertain return. The layers of feedback ripping through the clouds as the plane lands towards the end are simply magical. “Black Buzz”, however, is starkly bare, as Pundt fancies himself a cowboy storyteller, with a tale of a person lost in thought and isolation.

Bookended by washed-out pieces recalling Basinski’s Disintegration Loops but showcasing his most straightforward songwriting yet, this album solidifies for us what Pundt has always been: a vital element of Deerhunter and an understated conjurer of rock reveries.


user ratings (90)
Chart.
3.5
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
joplinpicasso
April 12th 2012


427 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Damn edit function not letting me change the code =|

DBlitz
April 12th 2012


1690 Comments


some stand out songs but idk

FelixCulpa
April 12th 2012


1240 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Strangers is soo good.

robin
Emeritus
April 12th 2012


4248 Comments


nice review man. this record is a joy to listen to

Anthracks
April 12th 2012


3744 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

i hear this is a depressing album so im hesitant to listen

Digging: Perfume Genius - Too Bright

StreetlightRock
Emeritus
April 12th 2012


3768 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

This is such a good record.

Digging: Interpol - El Pintor

Anthracks
April 12th 2012


3744 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

so it's depressing then?

my god this is pretty insanely boring

Ethics
April 20th 2012


4112 Comments


remember our days is great

clercqie
Contributing Reviewer
August 27th 2012


6448 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

They're playing with Cloud Nothings in the near future. I should check them out.

Digging: Interpol - El Pintor

joplinpicasso
January 3rd 2013


427 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

End of 2012 front-page feature? If so, I'm honored!

Ethics
January 3rd 2013


4112 Comments


saw this live was first show ever!!!

TheFantasticDangler
January 3rd 2013


1158 Comments


The album title is very interesting. It's a quote from Einstein's interpretation of the phenomenon "quantum entanglement". Quantum physics is bad ass so I'm going to listen to this.

EDIT: Damn, this is not for me.

Digging: The Contortionist - Language

TheHoggle
January 3rd 2013


11 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

One of the best albums of 2012

Ethics
January 5th 2013


4112 Comments


agreed

Aids
Contributing Reviewer
January 13th 2013


23828 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

lol so this is pretty much just a Deerhunter album? It sounds pretty cool, I'm not complaining, but I mean let's mix it up Lockett.

(also, nice name)



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