Charge: I'm listening to Deer Tick right now, a lot.
Argument: The common complaint about Deer Tick is their lack of adventurousness, that they don't break from a lock-step adherence to traditional folk, country and rock 'n' roll sounds and structure. Each track is one or the other, with little blending, and that the band hasn't put its own footprint on the well-worn paths. I'd argue that right now, that is one of their strongest attributes. Just as the Black Keys' unironic take on garage blues earned them their own room in the mostly-empty indie house of earnestness, Deer Tick, for the time being, can crank out a rockabilly track, followed by a Rolling Stones homage and not offend any listeners like myself looking for an unwinking throwback every now and again. And, lets not forget the superb lyrics and dude's industrial-grade blender voice. Like Dylan bled through a broken speaker, lead singer/principle songwriter John McCauley's throat adds a whole new texture to the slide guitars, country shuffles and occasional rock 'n' roller. If your looking for a reason to listen to Deer Tick, his voice should be enough, and it should also be different enough to separate the band from its obvious influences.
Decision: The band has two tradition-minded albums under it's belt. Why rush the maturation and "expanding their sound" album? As long as the songs are good, what's wrong with playing the music most of us love to listen to? The upbeat chord change midway through "Born on Flag Day's" opening track "Easy" should be enough to validate the whole enterprise. We don't need any more synths or computer blips in the background of alt.country songs. I think Wilco has it covered.