Published Jan 14, 2020Holy Fuck's biggest strength has always been their ability to turn reckless abandon into dance floor catharsis. Their best work embraces unpredictability and an unbridled experimental spirit; after all, this is a group whose own mandate has been to create electronic music without electronics. Deleter finds the band recruiting guests like Hot Chip's Alexis Taylor to help deliver an energetic and danceable record. However, it lacks the urgency of their strongest material.
Holy Fuck have always used their live band setup well, and Deleter is further proof. The rhythmic interplay and heavy use of polyrhythms is front and centre across the record, and it makes an effective backdrop for the band's electronic madness. Tracks like "Moment" and "Free Gloss" show the band really embracing their electronic rock leanings, pairing Krautrock-esque rhythmic drive with dreamier textures. Opener "Luxe" is a good showcase of the band's playful spontaneity, and makes good use of Taylor's guest appearance.
Those looking for the breakneck speeds or the hang-on-for-dear-life atmosphere of LP or Latin might be let down by the more conventional approach to Deleter. The band have used their unpredictability in the past to create compelling material that feels like it's coming apart at the seams, which just added another layer of excitement. It's not like their transition from aggressive dance-punk to more refined electronic rock has caused them to lose their edge. Their funky, rhythmic side is as good as ever, they just don't need to create musical maelstroms at every chance.
Even though it doesn't reach the exhilarating highs of their peak moments, Deleter works as a serviceable showcase of the band's grasp of controlled rhythm and noise. (Last Gang)