The Depreciation Guild

<i>In Her Gentle Jaws</i>

BY Cam LindsayPublished Mar 6, 2008

It’s unclear what wave of shoegazing we’re currently in, but if I had to say, it’d be the fifth wave. (Email me if you want an actual, long-winded breakdown of what I think are the five waves. But please, only if you REALLY can't live without an explanation.) And as far as paying tribute to the original core of artists that built and maintained "the Scene That Celebrates Itself” during the ’80s and very early ’90s, today is the most fertile group of disciples.

Whereas the mid-to-late ’90s was all about trying to keep swirling wah wah alive and well, and the early aughties felt just lost with experimentation, the last few years has seen an upsurge in homage looking to build on the dreamy psychedelics and progress into many different new directions. At the same time though, there seem to be more bands than ever that think listening harder to Souvlaki is enough. (It isn’t.)

Brooklyn duo the Depreciation Guild aren’t the most innovative act of this fifth wave, but the faint traces of imagination and experimentation they add to their wall of sound is enough to elevate them into the upper echelon of the "scene.” A recent Pitchfork review obsessed with the band’s laptop enhancement and Nintendo-heavy influence, but to my ears, the Depreciation Guild aren’t exactly pushing the realms of NEScore.

The two-man set-up certainly relies on the laptop heavily: the beats are all noticeably programmed, much like the ribbon of synths that glide under the carousel of distortion and reverb. It’s a practice that seems to define this generation of ’gazers. However, there is an unmistakable NES presence in the 8-bit rummaging "Butterfly Kisses,” which unleashes a bubbling videogame soundtrack amongst guitars that immaculately emulate the Cocteau Twins’ chime and Ride’s spinning distortion.

While it likely isn’t their preference as to how they get noticed, the best thing of all about the Depreciation Guild is that they’ve made their debut album, In Her Gentle Jaws, absolutely free to download in full, per track or purely just sample at your own leisure (the sublime "Parasol Parachute” is a must-hear). In this day and age of overwhelming competition and constant technological transition, why the hell not?

Download In Her Gentle Jaws

The Depreciation Guild "Butterfly Kisses”

The Depreciation Guild "Parasol Parachute”

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