Born On Flag Day

  • Record Label: Partisan
  • Release Date: Jun 23, 2009

Generally favorable reviews - based on 15 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 15
  2. Negative: 0 out of 15
  1. By sacrificing grit, some of the charm that made the debut a success is lost along the way, but the sleeker production is only a minor setback and some of the songs onboard are Deer Tick's best thus far.
  2. I want to stress one last time, post-catch, that these aren’t terrible songs, nor do they add up to a terrible album. But the net effect is nevertheless one of tedium and disappointment, a partial reminder of "War Elephant's" potential instead of an attempt to realize it.
  3. Taken for what it is: strong folk leanings, with a sweet country shuffle, delivered with some of the best lyrics of the year, they all make for one brilliant combination.
  4. McCauley writes within genre, embraces its trappings, and emerges with completely acceptable results.
  5. Filter
    The band is not exactly daytripping here and there is a great fervor in what they do, but the fruit is not quite ripe. [Summer 2009, p.102]
  6. The likes of "Little White Lies" (lost love as spirit death), "Straight Into a Storm" (found love as rock and roll life), and "Song About a Man" (grandpa) translate perfectly into their long-diddled dialect.
  7. Deer Tick's primary shortcoming is that the band evokes authentically gutty music from the past without noticeably inserting much of themselves into the equation, achieving superficial mimesis and comforting recognition while failing to put their own stamp on their creations.
  8. From its swampy backwoods grooves to its alpha-male protagonists, Born on Flag Day is a fundamentally, rivetingly nostalgic album.
  9. Q Magazine
    His alt-country songs bristle with classic influences form Gram Parsons to John Fogerty to Steve Eerle. New dog, old tricks. [Jan 2010, p. 122]
  10. McCauley sounds no less lonely, staring down abandonment and death in gentle waltzes and country-rock rambles.
  11. 70
    As deft revivalists of “country” in all its forms, the four guys in Deer Tick are entitled to wallow. Luckily, though, their second album delivers doses of pop buoyancy.
  12. Unlike "War Elephant," which resembled an indie band’s stab at country, Born On Flag Day suggests a headlong dive into the canon, with little irony and varying results.
  13. Mr. McCauley is a committed formalist and a defiant singer; he loves hating himself, and he’s thorough about it. His band mates (Andrew Grant Tobiassen on guitar, Christopher Dale Ryan on bass, Dennis Michael Ryan on drums) smartly give him room to gasp, but maybe he’s got a future without them as a Nashville songwriter.
  14. 80
    McCauley's time might just have arrived.
  15. Under The Radar
    Born On Flag Day is sure to be slightly damned by Deer Tick's earlier success; it's no radical step forward, but McCauley was already on a good path. [Summer 2009, p.74]
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 10 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 1
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 1
  3. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. WardT.
    Jun 26, 2009
    Pitchfork are a bunch of idiots. This is a great, gritty alt-country album, saturated with classic rock influences and touch of Pitchfork are a bunch of idiots. This is a great, gritty alt-country album, saturated with classic rock influences and touch of '50's rockabilly, simple but full of straight-from-the-heart songs, sung out loud. You cannot love this genre and not love this album. Come on, give it a try. Just because that tool Brian Williams likes them doesn't mean they're not actually great! And a bad review from Pitchfork - increasingly meaningless in general - must be taken with a grain of salt here, since the singer has openly called the website a "steaming pile of shit." After this review, it's hard not to see his point. Full Review »