Death of the Gideon
Wellington band Terror of the Deep has been around since 2008 and, in the way that you’d hope, each release improves the sound – and direction – of the band; they feel more focussed, more confidant, calm even, with each album/EP. So the latest, Death of the Gideon, is their best set of tunes.
There are flashes of all the right indie/pop touchstones, some “Dunedin Sound”/Flying Nun, The Go-Betweens, Velvet Underground, all those obvious references/influences but it’s been shaped now to fully suit the sound of Terror of the Deep; they have arrived at their own feel. Their own place. Songs like Times of Uncertainty in fact showcase everything I’ve just named, all in the one tune, but you only realise that after. You’re sure you’re listening to a band called Terror of the Deep, not just a band that wants to hint at Go-Betweens, VU and some Nun.
Oliver Dixon and William Daymond are writing songs that have all the right ideas in the right places, ducks all in a row. Do Not Ask For Love (Daymond’s composition) has hints of The Chills in the way it opens and then falls, perfectly, into a range of sixties-referencing sounds, sounding most like bands from the 80s and 90s that were so overtly influenced by the 60s, R.E.M. offshoots, The dB’s come to mind.
Closing track, Get It Together, feels like what might have happened if Pavement moved to Dunedin. Something you imagine Stephen Malkmus might have actually contemplated, however briefly.
Terror of the Deep impressed me with 2011’s Permanent Weekend but I think the EP-format really suits them here – five songs, no duds, no filler, all quality. The perfect way to build on the burgeoning reputation as a great live act. With this set of songs they solidify their sound – and hint, so clearly, that there is more to come. Hopefully a lot more. Or even a little, again (another EP) – because it’s (all) going the right way.