March 28, 2016 | Joshua Macala
There comes a time in every person's life- I believe- where they have to admit that music does not need vocals/words to be good. You can go all the way back to classical music if you really want to, but if you prefer to stay closer to the present then I suggest not looking any further than Deardarkhead's "Strange Weather", an EP full of instrumental numbers which are more powerful than a lot of songs with words I've heard before.
Of course I struggle to find a genre to put Deardarkhead in simply because they don't have vocals and I tend to feel like the singing style of someone can dictate where to put them if you, say, own a record store. For the most part, these songs are a throwback to earlier years but not too long ago- maybe the 1980's or early 1990's. It's what I would call post-punk if I believed punk was dead, pulling influences in from Thursday (without the -core) and in their own way Deardarkhead even manages to sound a bit like an upbeat version of The Cure.
Aside from the fact that you could think of any number of bands such as Modern English to compare this with- depending upon your own personal influences growing up- I think you just have to sit back and admire the pure musicianship of it all. The fourth song really begins to sing on its own, even without vocals, and that's something not many bands can or have ever been able to pull off.
It should go without saying that the musical instruments are the stars of this EP (Well, the humans playing them technically) but if you don't feel these thunderous bass lines, infectious guitar riffs or just the all around stellar drum work on "Strange Weather" then you are really not listening to it properly. It's not like you have to find it hiding behind vocals about whatever-- it's all just right there, in your face (specifically your ears) and it's very easy for me to have this serve as a soundtrack to my life.