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Best overall musical act: Deerhunter

Staff Pick

At this point, there's no stopping Deerhunter's total domination of the indie music scene both in Atlanta and beyond. After undergoing personnel changes this year - including the departure of bassist Josh Fauver, followed by the addition of Frankie Broyles (guitar) and Josh McKay (bass) - the quintet has continued to excel on every front. 2013's Monomania, Deerhunter's most raucous release since 2007's Cryptograms, is an unabashed love letter to garage rock's avant-garde outer limits. In April, the group premiered the album's title track on "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon." Frontman Bradford Cox used every chance to translate the band's signature live spectacle to the night owl audience, resulting in an unrefined performance over which many people are still scratching their heads. In June, the group curated the annual All Tomorrow's Parties festival in Camber Sands, U.K., taking full advantage of such a massive stage by performing its albums Cryptograms, Microcastle, and Halcyon Digest in their entireties, and placing ATL outsiders Lonnie Holley and Hollow Stars alongside notable acts such as the Breeders, Steve Reich, Panda Bear, and more. Five albums in, Deerhunter has surpassed more music industry high points than most bands ever dream about.
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