Dan Deacon announces new album ‘Mystic Familiar,’ due out Jan. 31

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Credit: Frank Hamilton

The year 2020 promises a lot of things, like elections and a Leap Day, and now, thankfully, it will include new Dan Deacon music.

The local electronic music maestro today announced the release of new album “Mystic Familiar,” his first since 2015’s “Gliss Riffer.” Due out Jan. 31 on Domino Records, the record boasts a song cycle that, per a release, paints “life as a psychedelic journey brimming with bliss and disruption, darkness and light.”

Lead single “Sat by a Tree,” out today, offers a sense of what that means. Over a rolling bass line and rush of synths, Deacon sings about enjoying a respite by the campfire to converse with an anthropomorphic tree, and ultimately realizing that he has accepted death as a part of life.

The accompanying video, directed by Daren Rabinovitch and starring comedian Aparna Nancherla, shows a woman lying on the ground as bugs eat her decomposing body–and to be honest, she seems pretty at ease with the whole thing. It ends with a shot of a green plant emerging from the dirt.

Watch the clip here.

Deacon expanded on the concept in a video interview, saying that he tries not to see death in the macabre sense.

“The way the video ends, I think, is sort of in line with what I was saying with the song itself,” he said. “Are we watching a prequel to that plant, or are we watching the end of that human form?”

Deacon has kept busy since the release of “Gliss Riffer,” writing film scores for “Rat Film,” HBO’s “Well Groomed” and ESPN’s “30 for 30: Subject to Review,” and collaborating with the NYCBallet, LAPhil and Baltimore Symphony Orchestra.

But he kept returning to work that employs his own voice, using therapeutic practices and meditation to help construct the songs that make up “Mystic Familiar.”

Deacon has nearly a dozen tour dates lined up in the month of November, and he’ll start the new year with some late-January and early-February dates in Europe. Then he comes back for two months of shows in the U.S., and while there’s no hometown show just yet, there almost certainly will be.

Brandon Weigel

Brandon Weigel is the managing editor of Baltimore Fishbowl. A graduate of the University of Maryland, he has been published in The Washington Post, The Sun, Baltimore Magazine, Urbanite, The Baltimore Business Journal, b and others. Prior to joining Baltimore Fishbowl, he was an editor at City Paper from 2012 to 2017. He can be reached at [email protected]
Brandon Weigel


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