Love is everyday magic. That’s the impression you get listening to Water, the new album by
Chicago trio Dehd. Veterans of Chicago’s increasingly fruitful DIY scene Jason Balla ( Ne-Hi
and Earring) Emily Kempf (Vail and formerly with Lala Lala) and drummer Eric McGrady share a
strange and inexplicable chemistry. The music is hazy and reverb-drenched, a scuzzy and hyped-up take on surf rock that could only come from the Third Coast. It’s all animated by the red-lining feel-good spirit of the Velvet Underground’s Loaded and the breezy melodicism of C86-era indie rock, with a dash of the Cramps’ spooky-hop bop courtesy of McGrady’s locomotive drumming. It’s a clear-eyed look at the wild nature of everyday life that’s been spun up in sugary sweet melodies and scratched-crystal sounds. More than anything, it’s the embodiment of Dehd’s m.o. from the start: As Kempf puts it, “Work with what you have and make it magical.”
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