Dan Deacon Spiderman of the Rings

Dan Deacon Spiderman of the Rings
Baltimore’s Dan Deacon specialises in a kind of pawnshop electronica, making music out of a mountain of leftover gear from rave’s heydays with the same tenacity the Ramones used to attack their three chords. He sings the anthemic choruses you’ll find on Animal Collective or Man Man albums but when it comes to the music side of things, he has more in common with what you’ll typically find on Jason Forrest’s Cock Rock Disco and Kid606’s Tigerbeat labels. Deacon’s frequencies have attitude and he enjoys his BPMs at gabber speed. 2006’s Acorn Master EP, his first proper release after numerous CD-Rs and MP3s, was compelling but ultimately could not transcend the novelty value of its disparate connections. It was fun but vacuous. So, it’s a pleasant surprise to see that Spiderman of the Rings gets over that hump pretty quickly. Whereas Acorn Master had a blatantly off-the-cuff feel, here Deacon goes maximalist by building an exuberant wall of Casio sound worthy of Phil Spector. Deacon takes what could have been another cheeky electronic album reared by current indie rock — where earnest is the new irony — and turns it into a meticulously crafted, 21st century pop one-of-a-kind. Impressive.
Spiderman of the Rings is an electronic album embedded in an indie rock mentality. Would you agree?
Indie rock or noise rock — it’s the same thing, I guess, in the end. Much of the scene I came up out of was settled in the whole DIY basement and warehouse party thing, where you could do anything really, and so this album reflects that.

You put out a lot of CDRs before the Acorn Master EP. What were those like?
Most were just solo compositions I’d perform on my own or were composed for large ensemble or vocal groups of six to eight people. The largest was an ensemble piece for 21 people. Those were really strict, notated pieces, or really Fluxus influenced. They’re much more in the experimental realm of composition, not so pop-based like this album, way more bizarre. I still do a lot of that stuff in Baltimore but touring it is problematic. It’s difficult to take a huge ensemble on the road. Most people don’t want to sit through 45 minutes of a jerk off session, for lack of a better term. (Carpark)