Yeasayer’s secret weapon shoves “Devil And The Deed” toward the dance floor
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In Hear This, A.V. Club writers sing the praises of songs they know well—some inspired by a weekly theme and some not, but always songs worth hearing.
The two main voices of Yeasayer—Chris Keating and Anand Wilder—aren’t particularly strong. Or unique: It took me several spins through the band’s 2007 debut, All Hours Cymbals, to realize that the lead vocal duties were being handled by multiple dudes. However, when either Keating or Wilder push into the falsetto of their otherwise-unremarkable range, they unlock some of the finest moments of Yeasayer’s anxious psych-pop. Like a sequel to the Bee Gees-like booster shot Keating delivers in the coda of “O.N.E.” (from 2010’s Odd Blood), the chorus of “Devil And The Deed” finds its power in a dose of high-pitched vocals, staccato stabs of falsetto urging the glitchy Fragrant World track toward the dance floor like the syncopated strings of a disco stunner. (Or, you know, “Call Me Maybe.”) The interplay between Wilder’s lead vocal and Keating’s background contributions reinforce the fact that there’s truly only one main voice in Yeasayer, and that’s the sound of all its members blending seamlessly together amid instrumental clashes and apocalyptic lyrics.