The debut EP by Red Deer People,‘Fun Fun Fun’, opens with a song titled after the EP. It is an emotionally stimulating post-punk rollercoaster, driven by a gripping bassline which transcends into a colossal sounding mixture of sweeping guitar sounds. This blends in with smooth and subtle synths which add a blast of positive energy into what is otherwise quite a dark and dirty tune, filled with haunting vocals. This sounds like something that would feel entirely at ease on a record by post-punk pioneers: Magazine, yet with a Peter Hook-esque bassline and some Neu! thrown in for good measure.
The second track on the record, ‘Happy Birthday Son’, is a much darker and harder hitting tune, even more driven by the bass this time as it gives the impression of something impending. It pulses with a sense of urgency before erupting into action as the singer screams out: “Pushing buttons, pulling triggers, drowned like rats in dirty rivers”. This adds a very tasteful punky flavour to an already colourful musical canvas.
The final song on the EP, ‘They Thought of Everything’, once again relies heavily on the bass, which remains to be a very defining feature on this EP. This time though, the beating drums and screeching guitar really combine to create what is truly a grand finale of high energy modern punk music. The use of feedback, works really well here to give the song a definitive sense of attitude. Drowned in floods of paranoia, the haunting fades, turning into fast-paced energy bursts that work perfectly well in conjunction. This band clearly know what they’re doing.
Overall this record brings back the high energy nature of punk and often Krautrock inspired music that existed just before New-wave came along, but Red Deer People very much make this their own. With clever lyrics and a fantastic blend of instruments coming together spectacularly – it’s refreshing to see a band make use of the bass guitar in such an ingenious fashion.
Words by Jack Moore