Halcyon Digest - Deerhunter
User Score
8.5

Universal acclaim- based on 115 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 4 out of 115

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  1. Sep 28, 2010
    10
    After every new album that has amazed me this year, I immediately tell myself "Best of the year". But after a few weeks, I dont quite feel the same way. So this time, I will not say "Best of the year". But damn, it certainly has a chance at taking this spot. Definitely the most beautiful of the year
  2. Sep 28, 2010
    7
    A blur is forming too much between Deerhunter and Atlas Sound. A majority of the songs are wonderful. The tribute to Jay Reatard and the song with the saxophone (!) The shame is...where is the saxophone and banjo and all these other instruments in the other songs? Halcyon Digest is a solid album - don't get me wrong, but the transition from Cryptograms to Microcastle is still much more impressive.
  3. Oct 9, 2010
    3
    You know, I've listened to the bulk of Deerhunter and Atlas Sound's collective output, and I've realized a couple things...first, as much as everyone claims that this album is unique and a step ahead, it's stylistically no different from their previous album, Microcastle--same heavily treated guitars droning on for way too long, same vocals wailing with forced emotion in the distance, same clunky percussion. This album is by no means a step forward, and a step forward is what Deerhunter really needed. Second, the album doesn't hook you in and make you want to listen to it all the way through--the opener is a snoozer at best. Bradford Cox may like to write "thought-provoking" instrumentation, but he falls flat on his face when he tries to pen music that's in any way catchy. You have to force yourself through the first couple songs, which I suppose was intentional--Deerhunter panders to an elitist indie clientele, right? Overly dry and pretentious music is sure to weed out the majority of listeners and leave only devoted followers of the band. For everyone who isn't a Bradford fanboy, I highly recommend passing this one by. Halcyon Digest is really not worth the extra time or money. Expand
  4. Oct 9, 2010
    10
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. After reading the sputnikmusic review i came to realise that deerhunter have made a more immediate but enjoyable album. The abrasive element to the music is still here. If you were a fan of the previous Deerhunter album or Atlas Sound's logos, this won't be a hard transition. Good work Deerhunter! Expand
  5. Oct 9, 2010
    10
    This album is more immediate then Microcastle as it leans more on pop rather then rock, but that doesn't stop it from being an amazing record. From the ambiance to the hooks, this album explores a little more then Microcastle, I love them both equally, well, actually, I think I'd give a slight edge to Halcyon Digest.
  6. Oct 24, 2010
    10
    Deerhunter's Halcyon Digest is an album full of art, passion, and emotion that gives you the feeling of loneliness. But this isn't the teenage suicidal loneliness, no. It's the loneliness that genuinely makes you sympathize.
  7. j30
    Dec 6, 2011
    8
    There were moments I loved about this album, but a few of the songs were just "meh". The high points are worth every second of your time. You get the feeling Deerhunter are scratching the surface and a great band is waiting the burst.
  8. Jun 15, 2012
    9
    Psychedelic, beautiful, revolting, depressive. Deerhunter knows how to express this feelings in their ambient-pop songs. Even if it feels that you already listen to a song in the other albums, it sounds new though, just telling by the texture, lyrics and sound effects of the songs. The difference between Microcastle and Halcyon Digest is huge. It's normal people have this feeling, specially in this kind of music... Expand
  9. Sep 30, 2010
    7
    A big disappointment in my book. Certainly some of their strongest work is here on display, yet I find Microcastle far more engaging, stronger lyrically and with a better tempo. The highs are high, but the sluggish valleys between aren't strong enough to hold the whole together. A few listens in it sounds pretty good, but after 5 or 6 the luster fades, quickly. A 92 Pitchfork? Get real. http://auraleyes.blogspot.com/ Expand
  10. Oct 2, 2010
    10
    Absolute class. Just when you thought that indie music was dying on it's feet, Deerhunter deliver an collection that is bold, varied, fresh and intelligent. They lead where others will surely follow. it is and will be the album of the year.
  11. Oct 3, 2010
    9
    Ah... what was that I just listened to? I mean, really interesting and I will probably hear it differently each time I listen. Tedious yet insanely pretty, lyrically intelligent without direct meaning, horns that don't know they're playing together and syncopating out a rhythm. I am somewhat led to believe Deerhunter doesn't know what the hell they are doing.....brilliant!
  12. Oct 1, 2010
    10
    Fantastic album with the lows delicate and the highs brilliantly realized. It's a "10" not because it is perfect (maybe another rocker and delete one of the slower songs would get it closer to that impossible status) but because it is thrilling, effecting, and brilliant. Deerhunter now stands alone as the country's best band.
  13. Oct 5, 2010
    9
    Another album that plays like a timeless classic from the off. I don't know how they do it because it's hard to define what makes them different from 99% of rotation rock, but they are. When are they coming to the UK? Soon please before the masses cotton on.
  14. Oct 8, 2010
    7
    In comparison to Microcastle, it feels stripped down both in production and songwriting. It has a few extremely bright moments but most of the songs either failed to reach their full potential or ended before they had a chance to. It reminds me of Bradford Cox's recent solo work more than previous Deerhunter albums, which isn't a bad thing, but I was hoping for something a bit more far reaching on this album. Expand
  15. Oct 12, 2010
    8
    Okay, so there is a couple of duds in the mix, but the other stuff is so hooky and compelling that it doesn't matter. Also, this is a grower, which I appreciate: I enjoyed it more and more with each listen. I think a one-album release (as opposed to Microcastle/Wierd Era) is the way to go for these guys, as it tends to trim the long, washy, boring stuff. In the end, the songs are catchy, and that's what keeps me listening. Expand
  16. Oct 25, 2010
    8
    A great follow-. It takes their career to the next level, one that is more subtle and more lyrically direct. Some songs are still a bit lost, but overall the album has one, big voice.
  17. Nov 5, 2010
    7
    Really great album. Nothing bad to say about it, I just didn't like some of the songs as much as the other ones. Definitely something you should check out though.
  18. Nov 11, 2010
    9
    It's like they've found the perfect note to continuously lull out and as the listener you are just victim to listen to these quite simple yet effective songs. It's an album to check out, I can't narrow down why they're so effective, possibly subliminal messaging.
  19. Jan 20, 2011
    9
    I can't believe that they made a song with a sax featured in it and made it sound absolutely **** amazing. Great album. "Desire Lines" rides out, and "Fountain Stairs" are a couple of really catchy, good songs. This is a bit of a grower album but an excellent one.
  20. Nov 22, 2010
    10
    In a year of already great music, this is among the best. I'd call it Deerhunter's best effort so far, finally coming into their own as alt- indi- artists. Terrific mood music, well orchestrated synth rhythms on some songs, terrific melody and songcraft on others. I didn't find any filler on this album either, each song stands on its own. Withstands repeated listens.
  21. Mar 27, 2011
    9
    Deerhunter is unique. It's unlike any rock band I've heard. The tracks are beautiful and harmonic. Some tracks are three minutes long but it feels so dragged out. You get lost in this record. "Desire Lines" is easily the stand out track on this record. Every other track has a distinct sound to it that you either hate or you love and I love it. All In All, Halcyon Digest is a spellbinding record that you'll get lost in. A- Expand
  22. Nov 24, 2010
    9
    This album is amazing! I love the perfect reverb, the lyrics are beautiful. Each song is put in the perfect place on this album. One of my favorite songs, Coronado, brought Deerhunter to a whole other level. They added extra instrumentation with the saxophone, the full sound of that song blew me away. Helicopter has an atmosphere around it that is beautiful. This is probably my favorite album of this year so far. Expand
  23. Dec 7, 2010
    9
    Another fantastic album from one of the best bands around. I have to admit I miss some of the distortion and volume but I am a sucker for that stuff. It is refreshing to see them strip it down and try their hat at a pop album. They pull it off with ease and almost all of the tracks sound great. Desire Lines may be my favorite song of the year.
  24. Dec 3, 2010
    9
    I'll just come out and say it..If you don't generally like most indie rock, you won't like Deerhunter. However, this is their most accessible release, IMO. On the flipside, if you are totally into indie rock and have been following B. Cox's Deerhunter and Atlas Sound, I can understand why you may think this release represents a step in the same direction, and not a growth step. I wont get into an analysis of the music - there are lots of other reviews here that do a good job of that. But overall, this to me is their best record top to bottom. At least four songs are absolutely stellar. "Helicopter", "Desire Lines", "Coronado", and "Fountain Stairs". Expand
  25. Mar 24, 2012
    7
    I like this album. It's competent and well produced. But be weary, the reviews of the record probably over sell it. 'He Would Have Laughed' is worth the price alone though. Go ahead, buy it!
  26. Jun 24, 2011
    10
    Great album.. there is a review for Deerhunter at their recent set at Bonnaroo
    http://www.examiner.com/music-review-in-atlanta/atlanta-s-own-shines-at-music-s-largest-festival-review
  27. Nov 23, 2011
    8
    This is a very good record. It's hard to define what Deerhunter sounder like - it's tuneful indie music with some experimentation. If you like Indie Pop/Rock then you'll really like them. They've got some Sonic Youth going on with a hint of My Bloody Valentine. This is probably their best record and is a definite progression on from the Microcastle record.
  28. Oct 6, 2013
    10
    I know that Microcastle was awesome, but goddamn, this album is probably Deerhunter's best. The amount of overall effort and creativity that went into this is mind-blowing. One of the most interesting/atmospheric/fun things to listen to of 2010, let alone the 21st in general!
Metascore
86

Universal acclaim - based on 33 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 32 out of 33
  2. Negative: 0 out of 33
  1. Conceive it as DJ electronica that makes its point, starting all partial and halting before gathering itself to a properly modest climax. Except that it's played by a live band. And has OK lyrics. Smart, nothing‑-pretty darned intelligent.
  2. Dec 20, 2010
    78
    Most of the album could pass as solo recordings, like the slow-motion slumber of "Earthquake!" and the girl group gauze of "Basement Scene," but that's balanced with more concise, full band selections that sound like half-remembered 1960s pop songs.
  3. Oct 26, 2010
    100
    Halcyon Digest goes by like a breeze, and when it's finished there's nothing better to do than play it again.