This article originally ran in 2015, but we’re dusting it off in celebration of Dan Deacon’s birthday on August 28th.
Ever felt overwhelmed by an artist’s extensive back catalog? Been meaning to check out a band, but you just don’t know where to begin? In 10 Songs is here to help, offering a crash course and entry point into the daunting discographies of iconic artists of all genres. This is your first step toward fandom. Take it.
Artist, composer, prankster, madman, genius. Dan Deacon is an electronic music producer and performer with a rock and roll heart. He embodies the post-modern crisis in production: a multivalent artist whose work exhibits no boundaries and phases in and out of any genre or style restriction thrown at him.
Deacon cut his teeth in the early 2000s filling Baltimore warehouses with a unique blend of party-friendly electronic dance music that never strayed far from his background as a contemporary classical composer. In the ensuing decade, he has produced over eight albums and a variety of singles, remixes, EPs, one-offs, and collaborations.
We’re taking a moment to look back upon the weird, divisive, occasionally hilarious, and ALWAYS danceable career of the inimitable Dan Deacon. Gathered here are 10 tracks arranged to provide listeners, both new and old, with a survey of the complicated aesthetic imagination and motivation that have earned Deacon a place as one of the most influential, and enjoyable, composers/producers/musicians working today. Scroll to the end for a playlist of the tracks that are on Spotify.
— Kristofer Lenz