Tuesday, January 20, 2009
Animal Collective - Merriweather Post Pavilion
The reception to this record (absurd amounts of expectation followed by hysterical reactions of love and appraisal everywhere since its leak) can very well be translated by "In The Flowers", the first song included in "Merriweather Post Pavilion": mysterious and hypnotic arpeggios build an atmosphere of obsessive anticipation to something huge that is about to happen, with Avey Tare incessantly singing words like "the dancer who gets wild to the deep revelling rhythm" or "if I could just leave my body for a night"; and then, when we can't hold the expectation any longer, everything finally erupts and multiplies into an immense catharsis of sounds and rhythms that really, for lack of better words, is fucking excellent. As a side note, I have to confess that, for a few moments and before hearing it, I almost wanted to not like this album, seeing such an enormous and almost annoying consensus over it, and also because I was kinda disappointed with their previous "Strawberry Jam". But hey, believe the hype, this record is really that and that good. The thing is, after that first song / cathartic explosion, they manage to maintain (or even surpass!) the feeling of euphoric blissfulness induced, using everything they can lay their hands on (and some more) to build larger than life songs that, more than causing goosebumps, actually manage to open your brain and aim directly to your whole body. Using a multitude of layers that include infinite sounds, voices, melodies, rhythms, samples, all recorded very loud but with crystal clear detail, this is the most sincere soundtrack to a party where 3 guys are having the time of their lives playing with sequencers, samplers, vocal harmonies and everything else they have nearby. So much so that, more than a dozen listens on, and I'm still discovering a whole new world of details in each of these incredibly amazing 11 songs. So yeah, guess I'm one more joining the club: this is radiant happiness at its best. (9/10)
UPDATE: here is the official video for "My Girls", which btw may very well become THE SONG of 2009.