The Commercial Review: The Runners Four is the hottest new album on the racks this month! Deerhoof is back with their same old sound, but this time around they challenge their listeners with a much mellower tone and a sonic and lyrical depth that showcases their maturation as an indie rock band. Buy it today so you can be cool just like all of your friends!

The Cheesy Comparison: Deerhoof’s newest album, The Runners Four, reminds me of the soft deluge of rain on my bedroom window on a mid-October afternoon, sleepy and contemplative, and interrupted on occasion by a jarring, ear-splittingly loud clap of thunder. The rhythm of the rain is complex and ever-changing, but the overall, placid tone is still the same; this much I would also say about the album. A departure from other works, which could be more akin to being bombarded by masochistic butterflies while walking through a jolly Irish meadow, I find that The Runners Four is both a progression of earlier sounds, as well as an ingenious and calculating attempt at becoming more accessible while retaining the same charming and quirky qualities that make Deerhoof a truly innovative band.

The Gonzo Review: I wanted to really understand every fascinating nook and cranny of the newest Deerhoof album, The Runners Four, so I decided to embark on a long and perilous journey that involved copious amounts of narcotics, that shall, for the time being, remain unnamed, (if only for the safety of this Artsweek reporter) as well as a car chase that somehow resulted in my being lost at sea for several hours with nothing but a pack of slightly moist cigarettes, a Zippo lighter and my portable compact disk player. The Runners Four afforded me just the appropriate amount of solace that one might need while attempting to suck in wet cancer while clinging to a tire just off of the Left Coast. Although I should probably have suffered severe electrical shock from my episode at sea, I feel that Deerhoof changed my perception of their artistry with this album perhaps more than three adrenal glands and a pocketful of LSD could ever change, really…

My Actual Opinion: Deerhoof has always been one of my favorite bands, and even though The Runners Four seems like a departure from the direction that they took with Milk Man – it is a little less schizophrenic and a little more like a conventional indie rock album – the songs still incorporate all of the qualities I love about Deerhoof without really compromising their former artistic vision in order to reach a larger demographic.
[Rebecca Riley needs to sign herself up with AAA.]