In her first music video as deer scout, folk pop up-and-comer Dena Miller mounts a keg stand at a frat party. It’s a bold move, but isn’t that just part of being a college kid leaving the nest?
After her first year at Oberlin College (currently home to all-star bands like T-Rextasy), Miller is an expert on the “sad boy” – if you’re not familiar with the terminology, you’ve probably never looked around the crowd at a Mac Demarco show. In “Sad Boy,” Miller parodies the stereotypical liberal arts school boy that we love to hate. Filmmakers Nick Morgan and Haftom Khasai follow deer scout as she trudges through LED-clad arcades and empty subway stations, reflecting on the sad boy’s “transformative” experiences away from home – “I do my own laundry,” Miller reassures us. “I don’t need your pity.”
Funny as it may be to watch deer scout brood alone in the snow with a 40 oz bottle of cheap beer, not all sympathy is lost for the sad boy. “I laugh about sad boys, but I think there’s something really interesting about glorified male vulnerability,” Miller says. “I think a lot about how vulnerability is sometimes performed and isn’t entirely candid or sincere. Emotional expression and emotional accountability are not the same thing.” In the song itself, deer scout pokes subtle fun at the male-dominated DIY scene – she nods to LVL UP’s song “Annie’s a Witch,” which seems at first glance to be yet another song about pining after a girl, until you realize the song is actually about a stealthy cat.
deer scout’s debut EP customs is thoughtfully sincere, coupling quiet acoustic guitar melodies with accounts of love lost and found. But in her follow-up “Sad Boy,” Miller flaunts both her snarky side and her royal blue lipstick. It’s refreshing to listen to a song and laugh out loud at the lyrics – even more refreshing than the warm PBR kegs that college sad boys love.
Upcoming tour dates (with Francie Cool):
June 24th Philadelphia @ All Night Diner
June 25th Brooklyn @ Silent Barn
June 26th New Haven @ Bloomfield Village Pizza
June 27th Boston @ BBV
June 28th Brattleboro @ Brattleboro Printmakers
June 29th Western Mass @ Flywheel Collective
June 30th Brooklyn
July 5th DC @ Comet Pig Pong
July 6th Richmond @ Gallery 5
July 7th Baltimore @ Baltimore Free Farm
July 9th Philadelphia @ PhilaMOCA
Keep up with Deer Scout here.