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And in this performance an PO as well. In fact, in this show by Deerful, everything was battery powered, and I have to say that it worked beautifully.

You might remember Deerful from a video I posted a little while ago:

I’m a big fan of her work and so it was great to see her live for the first time at the Shacklewell Arms last Friday. It was an excellent performance. Deerful synth based pop is delicate, subtle and crafted with care. But just because it’s synth pop doesn’t mean it’s disposable, on the contrary her music is full of meaning and her lyrics are well worth several listens.

But apart from being battery powered you might be wondering why she’s getting a mention on PalmSounds, well that’s a good question and an easy answer too. Deerful is making music with a lot of mobile devices and apps too. In fact, her latest release (iTunes link) has been made with an OP-1 and NanoStudio on an iPad Mini. Moon Maps is one of the tracks on this release and I have to say that I’ve played it quite a few times now. I keep coming back.

But that’s not the only release from Deerful that I’ve enjoyed. City Bells (iTunes link) is also excellent and is probably one of the only songs I know of that has the word ‘Michaelmas’ in it, and yes, it rhymes too. If that wasn’t enough then Emma (Deerful) is also a part of School of Noise too, and if you don’t know what that is then click the link and find out, you won’t be sorry.

But playing with an all battery powered rig has it’s challenges too. Before the gig Emma talked to me about the challenges it creates and how a constant reliance on batteries can make one somewhat nervous. I can understand that having done it myself.

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But none of this had any impact on her performance, which was wonderful. Polished and yet emotional. Even though this little rig was small enough to fit on this tiny table it gave a big sound and all very complimentary too. Throughout the gig there wasn’t one song I didn’t enjoy.

But there was one song that really stood out for me for a couple of reasons.

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Emma introduced this song by assuring everyone in the audience that she wasn’t going to play it on a pocket calculator. Of course it was a Teenage Engineering PO (a robot I think). And the track was amazing. Really amazing. I hope that she releases it in the not too distant future. It was awesome to see someone perform with a PO device, and do it so competently as well, but to see and here this track and vocal were amazing. I can’t stress it enough.

So if you get a chance to see Emma (Deerful) then I’d strongly suggest that you take the opportunity. You won’t be sorry at all.

7 comments

  1. Already posted this on Facebook, but for what it’s worth – the Pocket Operator is an Arcade (although I am thinking quite hard about introducing a Robot!) and there’s a demo version of the song, Before Us Comes The Flood, on my Bandcamp (deerful.bandcamp.com). Thanks for the lovely review Ashley!

      1. I was under the impression that the Arcade is best for vocal accompaniment what with the chord capability, but the potential for proper lead lines on the Robot is suuuuper tempting.

      2. Actually here’s a question for you – are there any decent videos showing a) the lead capability of the Robot and b) the different sounds on it? Everything I watch is heavy on the sequencing side and the 80s guitar tone on it everyone who owns it seems to be obsessed with 😉

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