Album review: "Spooky Action at a Distance"
By Brandon Weigel
Friday, July 20, 2012
Many may consider gangly, outlandish frontman Bradford Cox to be the mastermind behind neo-shoegazers Deerhunter, but look a little deeper and you’ll see that the band wouldn’t work without the spiraling guitars and instrumental work of Lockett Pundt.
Pundt has proved he’s no slouch as a songwriter throughout the band’s career, contributing music and vocals to such staples as the buoyant psych-pop of “Agoraphobia” and the swirling “Desire Lines.”
For Pundt's side project, Lotus Plaza, and new album "Spooky Action at a Distance," his songs prove to be a bit more taut than Deerhunter's, but they are no less packed, with drawn-out vocal hooks and dense, looping guitars. Which is to say that the music hits a lot of the same payoffs while taking on an altogether new form.
A shimmering instrumental opens the album, and the second track, “Strangers,” features tightly wound guitars punctuated by crisp drum rolls that wash over Pundt’s anxiety about getting locked in his own loneliness. On “Dusty Rhodes,” Pundt’s vocals about leaving everything behind and starting over almost sound fragile and exposed over the light guitar strumming and drum pitter-patter, before everything accelerates and almost drowns him out.
But no matter. With Lotus Plaza, Pundt proves he can stand on his own.