Transcendent Psychedelic Rock
Angel Deradoorian, a tour-de-force in alternative music, is back and better than ever with her first full-length solo effort: The Expanding Flower Planet. An ex-member of the Dirty Projectors and current member of Avey Tare’s Slasher Flicks (the group also including Animal Collective member Avey Tare and Ponytail drummer Jeremy Hyman), Deradoorian has always made herself nothing short of sui generis; her elastic, otherworldly vocals keeping her highly distinctive.
The Expanding Flower Planet makes Deradoorian’s drought (in terms of solo material) worth the wait. The LP is nothing short of an ethereal masterpiece; a truly whimsical journey with an Eastern feel. Deradoorian’s vocals never stay in one place; echoing and bouncing back and forth tirelessly and with reckless abandon. Each track on The Expanding Flower Planet is also highly reminiscent of Deradoorian’s signature antiphonic style of singing, which she exercised so heavily in her time with the Dirty Projectors.
The opening track, “A Beautiful Woman,” is deliciously trippy, a refreshingly rich soundscape with a ’70s-esque old school vibe. Deradoorian’s soaring vocals take center stage, whilst the percussion gives the track a high-energy infusion. “Expanding Flower Planet” slows things down, a dreamy and lulling track emphasized by shakers and heavy percussion. “Violet-Minded” is arguably one of the standout tracks of the album. Deradoorian flexes her vocal chops more than ever. Her soaring high notes demand the full attention of the listener, the wah-wah and endless stream of psychedelic effects complementing her vocal proficiency.
“Grow” is an incredibly strong finisher; six minutes of a waltz-like trance. The erratic and furious guitar strums that occur at various intervals throughout the track take things in a folk-forward direction, and are somewhat evocative of the early work of Animal Collective. However, the remainder of the song is impossible to compare to anything else. It’s a melting pot of seemingly Asian-inspired melodies and low chanting intermingling with Deradoorian’s soaring soprano.
Deradoorian transcends genres and breaks barriers with The Expanding Flower Planet, and the LP is an explosive reminder of just how much her talents have been missed.