Take songs from Post-Hardcore band Fugazi’s 12 track album, In On The Killer Taker, and tailor them to classically trained European musicians, Stargaze. It was not as preposterous as arranger, Greg Saunier, drummer and founder member of the Indie Rock band Deerhoof made it out to be. Each of the nine members had solos written for their instrument which encapsulated the multiple parts of each song off the album including Public Witness Program, Smallpox Champion and Great Cop.
The instruments, including flute, cello, sax, violin and xylophone, picked out the skeleton of the songs and gave them a sparse, jerky quality. It was a relief when a couple of the songs were played altogether by the band giving a brief, yet full and rich sound. In contrast to this gentle take on rock music, for the second half, four piece band Deerhoof played heavy and loud from their extensive back catalogue.
Mostly, it comprised of a cacophony of guitars, odd time signatures and endearing monologues from Greg. One of these monologues gave him a welcome rest from his vigorous and superb drumming before they launched into The Perfect Me from their 2007 album Friend Opportunity, which was known by them to be sometimes played too fast.
A few technical issues were stylishly covered up as the french horn, flute and sax from Stargaze came to the rescue when the lead singer and bassist, Satomi Matsuzaki’s microphone failed. The same members of Stargaze came back for the finale adding a chamber music quality to I Will Spite Survive from 2017 album Mountain moves.