By: Melanie Broussalian
Los Angeles-based, loud-and-proud rock duo Deap Vally returns with their sixth studio release, Marriage. Hot off a collaborative album with the Flaming Lips in 2020 (Deap Lips), Marriage is a thumping, raucous collection of scuzzy, unapologetic anthems. Singer Lindsey Troy and drummer Julie Edwards deliver a huge sound with White Stripes-esque thumpers like the record’s second track, “Billions.” There’s a handful of collaborations across Marriage, all bringing their unique flavor to the 38-minute record. Jenny Vee is featured on “I Like Crime,” a sonic lovechild between Blondie and the Donnas, with a catchy riff that audiences will be able to sing along to almost immediately. While maybe not lyrically profound, “Phoenix” is an upbeat and confident track, best listened to on an empty highway with a heavy foot on the gas pedal. “Give Me a Sign” offers more complexity and sonic interest, with a sultry, reverb-heavy delivery that harkens equally to Lana Del Rey and Queens of the Stone Age.
Deap Vally has a hard-to-master knack for crafting tight, hook-heavy songs in under three minutes that still deliver as much sincerity and punch as longer rock anthems from their contemporaries. “High Horse” with KT Tunstall and Peaches is simple and straightforward; even though the tongue-in-cheek bridge falls a little flat, you can sense the fun that was had by all in the studio. The record ends on a subdued, yet strong, note with “Look Away,” featuring jennylee. All in all, Marriage is a well-balanced release that pushes the envelope on Deap Vally’s well-cultivated grungy sound. Personally, I hope to see this played live in a small room like the Troubadour, with Lindsey Troy and Julie Edwards ripping at full blast.