After bouncing around various blogs for the past couple of years, enigmatic London based producer Deptford Goth has pulled together a fine collection of tracks in the form his debut Life After Defo. Before you ask (because I did) he’s not from Deptford and he’s definitely not a goth. What he is, however, is a man with a finely tuned ear for the sublime. I’m sure there will the odd flippant remark about the slight self-consciousness of his name and the uber-zeitgeistie title of the album, but I don’t think any of that matters. What matters is the thoughtful construction of this collection of delicate songs. In fact, the whole album has got labour of love written into its very DNA. It’s almost painfully honest and heartfelt, and in the current musical climate of disposable competition pop fodder, this is a rare and welcome thing.
The opening track ‘Life After Defo’ has a sparse and seductive melody that chimes around the forlorn, near falsetto vocals, heavily reminiscent of M83 cuddling up to a mellow Hot Chip, and this is a statement of intent for the rest of the album. There are so many different melodic influences at play throughout, from the rich textures of ‘Guts No Glory’, which sounds like the easy bedfellow of early 80s Lloyd Cole, to ‘Union’, which is probably one of the best examples of a deconstructed pop song I’ve heard in a very long time. ‘Deepest’ could just be your new favourite soundtrack to that 5am comedown; blissed out and tender. Life After Defo is an intense collection of songs which feel strangely sad and euphoric at the same time, and with a 42 minute running time, you certainly get your money’s worth. Deptford Goth has managed to create an album that can stand pretty strongly beside the likes of James Blake and MMOTHS, and whether he was aiming to achieve that or not, it’s happened.
Life After Defo is out on Merok Records on 18 March.