Tuesday, 21 June 2011

Animal Collective - Merriweather Post Pavilion

Here we have the 2009 arpeggio based modern Synth Pop based outfit of Animal Collective.  Focusing on Neo-Psychedelia music, Animal Collective create a lovely blend between modern Pop songs and Experimental Ambient like sound scape's.nIt's impossible not to notice the use of arpeggio's throughout, on every track almost. The use of electronic percussion works so well, it's produced and polished to the max, with vocal harmonies coming from every direction imaginable.

They lyrics are not exactly Joni Mitchell, but they focus on personal influences from their own lives. Songs such as 'My Girls' focus on a basic arpeggio changing with a focus on heavy drum beats. This leads in to 'Also Frightened', which has brilliant textures, the background noise if truly outstanding in the album, it's all well and fair noting the tight electronics and harmonies, but the background noises and atmospheric jungle like sounds put everything together in a great blend. This album is much alike the previous, 'Strawberry Jam', but with a bigger attention to sound scape's. I'm a fan of both of these albums, much of Animal Collectives earlier career just isn't for me, others  prefer the earlier career, I for one like this Poppy, modern feel. 

'Summertime Clothes' is a hard hitting synth track with a simple drum beat. The chorus is strong here, whilst the verses are extremely harmonic and flow very well. The last third to this track is very good, speeding up with a delicate Ambient like backing. 'In The Flowers' is an instant likable track, it build up suddenly, where synths are a main focus again. This is a great opener and introduces the listener to the new, atmospheric sound of Animal Collective.

'Daily Routine' is a synth jam, whilst 'Bluish' follows a Wah Wah like feel on the synths. a steady, marching drum beat keeps this track flowing. 'Guy's Eyes' is a great track, harmonic and the later night, jungle sounds are incredible. The clean piano is welcomed after the flow of synth tracks.  'Lion In a Comma' is my favourite from MPP, it's a brilliant vocal driven track with a focus on instrumentation, with a great opening Aussie like feel.

'Brother Sport' ends the album in a Poppy, Experimental fashion. 'Open Up Your' being the lyrical phrase repeated throughout the opening, with synths kicking in. Then the verse kicks in, or is it the chorus, it's hard to establish as this song is all over the place, it doesn't have a basic structure, it follows an odd pattern of vocals. The vocals drive the song forward, they're the key to this track, the brilliant synth instrumentation and build ups work well to distinguish the change ins sound from the opening few minutes to the later, different vocal style to the song. A different Verse like lyrical style is repeated for the remaining few minutes of the album, where it slowly ends on a high.

This album has great production, fantastic attention to detail and sounds. The synths don't sound dated, they're modern whilst taking in influences from Synth Pop and the Psychedelic era. Overall it's a very good album, lyrically it's different.


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