Albums like this make me think that the "before" in "1001 Albums to Listen Before You Die" in fact establishes a causal relationship, rather than a procedural one
Merriweather Post Pavilion is the eighth studio album by American experimental pop group Animal Collective, released in January 2009 on Domino Records. The group recorded the album as a trio featuring members Panda Bear (Noah Lennox), Avey Tare (Dave Portner) and Geologist (Brian Weitz), with co-production by Ben H. Allen. The album features an electronic sound, including the use of samplers and synthesizers as primary instruments, as well as prominent reverb. It is titled after the Maryland venue of the same name, where Portner and Weitz attended concerts in their youth. The album peaked at No. 13 on the Billboard 200 and No. 2 on the US Top Independent Albums charts. According to review aggregate site Metacritic, Merriweather was the most critically acclaimed album of 2009, and went on to sell over 200,000 copies by 2012. It spawned the singles "My Girls" (named the Best Song of 2009 by Pitchfork and Slant Magazine), "Summertime Clothes", and "Brother Sport". The album's reverb-heavy psychedelic pop sound would exert a wide influence on music of the subsequent decade.
Albums like this make me think that the "before" in "1001 Albums to Listen Before You Die" in fact establishes a causal relationship, rather than a procedural one
helllllll yes dude i love this album!!!!! its like 1 of my favs. im like entirely unablle to write rn but this sxhit owbns. ethereal n gorgeoutd n psychedekiivc n shit. sorry thid is one handed im eating an apple rn. not my fav anco but top 5 4 sure
Appreciate the creativity here but I’m not sure it was animal collective’s intention for people to listen to this without access to shrooms
I have quite the soft spot for the psychedelic pop that Animal Collective seems to energetically spew into the world. It's loud, bewildering, complex music with an energy that I can never quite put my finger on but personally cannot stop chasing. It's a thrilling album that continues to challenge 10 years later while never feeling overbearing. The groups masterpiece no doubt.
An album born from ambition and technical prowess, but the unfortunate result is an album that's impossible to love. Let me elaborate. I came here knowing nothing about Animal Collective (after university I travelled the world for a decade, so when this came out I had no real desire to strain myself with maintaining a working knowledge of contemporary American indie trends), so this was my first experience of the group. Afterwards, I feel no internal clamour to make Animal Collective part of my life. Firstly, their aesthetic is wilfully garish and saccharine, but a conscious use of the garish and saccharine, whether sincere or ironic, is still garish and saccharine, and it will annoy those who have a distaste for the garish and saccharine, just as metal's aggressiveness and indelicacy alienates plenty of people. Secondly, I mentioned at the start that the album is ambitious, which is of course a highly loaded term. For instance, the choral singing constantly used on the album is a clear nod to the Beach Boys, but such an homage reveals irresolution as much as taste: are they complimenting the Beach Boys, or are they grasping for the trendiest ideas? I honestly can't tell you. Developing this Beach Boys comparison further, I don't think the melodies on this album are that memorable. Yes, I know there's also an unmelodic, glitchy rave aspect to this, but I think the desired result was to be a synthesis, not the actual unsatisfying compromise. This lack of memorable melody is what deflates the album, and I can't help feeling that the album was conceived as an exercise in cleverness rather than heart. For such a supposedly outgoing, emotive, happy band, I heard the faint clang of calculation in the background. Finally, on Guys' Eyes, one of the noises sounds like a fart. There are moments that appeal, and I accept that further listenings may increase my fondness for this, but I don't know if I want to devote any more of my life to Animal Collective. I'll give it three stars for effort (like I said, ambition has positive aspects, as well as negative ones), but that is partly bcause I want to be generous.
Introduction: Animal Collective's 2009 album, "Merriweather Post Pavilion," stands as a seminal work in the realm of experimental and electronic music. Known for their boundary-pushing soundscapes and innovative approaches to songwriting, this album solidified their status as pioneers of the genre. In this detailed review and analysis, we will explore the lyrical content, musical elements, and the broader context of this album's impact on contemporary music. Track-by-Track Analysis: "In the Flowers" The album begins with a cascade of layered vocals and intricate electronic textures. Lyrically, it explores themes of growth, transformation, and self-discovery. The use of ethereal harmonies and reverberating percussion sets the tone for the album's dreamlike journey. "My Girls" "My Girls" is a standout track that blends elements of electronic and folk music. The lyrics reflect a longing for stability and security, a sentiment many can relate to. The pulsating rhythm and hypnotic vocal loops create a sense of euphoria that's impossible to resist. "Also Frightened" This track delves into the complexities of human emotions and the fear of the unknown. The intricate layering of vocal harmonies and evolving electronic textures mirrors the theme of uncertainty and personal exploration. "Summertime Clothes" With its infectious melodies and vivid lyrics, "Summertime Clothes" captures the essence of summer and youthful joy. The song's playful rhythm and use of samples contribute to its danceable nature, making it a fan favorite. "Daily Routine" "Daily Routine" is an introspective exploration of the mundane aspects of life. The repetitive, almost ritualistic percussion and the mantra-like vocals mirror the monotony of daily existence while simultaneously evoking a sense of transcendence. "Bluish" Here, Animal Collective delves into themes of love and vulnerability. The lyrics, delivered with heartfelt sincerity, are complemented by shimmering synths and a soft, pulsating beat. It's a moment of tenderness in the midst of the album's experimental landscape. "Guys Eyes" This track introduces a more stripped-down sound, focusing on acoustic guitar and percussion. Lyrically, it explores the complexities of human relationships and the search for connection. The simplicity of the instrumentation highlights the emotional depth of the lyrics. "Taste" "Taste" is a psychedelic journey that touches on themes of desire and longing. The intricate layering of sound, including choral vocals and electronic glitches, creates a surreal and hypnotic atmosphere. "Lion in a Coma" Here, Animal Collective embraces a more tribal and percussive sound. The lyrics allude to the struggle for self-identity and personal evolution. The repetitive rhythm and chanting vocals give the impression of a spiritual ritual. "No More Runnin" "No More Runnin" reflects on the passage of time and the inevitability of change. The gentle acoustic guitar and soft vocal harmonies convey a sense of nostalgia and resignation. "Brother Sport" The album concludes with "Brother Sport," an anthemic track that celebrates unity and brotherhood. The tribal percussion and uplifting lyrics provide a fitting climax to the album's journey of self-discovery and growth. Musical Elements: "Merriweather Post Pavilion" is a sonic masterpiece that blends elements of folk, electronic, and psychedelic music. Animal Collective's use of vocal harmonies is a defining feature, with the layered vocals creating a lush and ethereal soundscape. The album's electronic textures, ranging from intricate glitches to warm synths, add depth and complexity to the music. The percussion, often tribal and rhythmic, serves as the heartbeat of the album, driving the songs forward with infectious energy. The use of samples and loops adds an experimental edge, making each track a unique sonic adventure. Lyrical Content: The lyrics on this album are poetic and introspective, exploring themes of self-discovery, love, longing, and the human experience. While often abstract and open to interpretation, they resonate on a deeply emotional level. Animal Collective's lyrical approach is both personal and universal, allowing listeners to connect with the themes on a visceral level. Impact and Legacy: "Merriweather Post Pavilion" had a profound impact on the world of experimental and electronic music. It pushed boundaries and inspired countless artists to explore new sonic territories. Its influence can be heard in the work of many contemporary musicians, and it remains a landmark album in the genre. In conclusion, "Merriweather Post Pavilion" by Animal Collective is a sonic journey through the complexities of the human experience. Its intricate musical arrangements and introspective lyrics make it a timeless and essential album for anyone interested in innovative and emotionally resonant music. This album stands as a testament to Animal Collective's artistic vision and their ability to push the boundaries of what music can be.
Forgive me for my bias, because Animal Collective is one of my favorite bands and their 2000s run is everything I like about experimental music, but yeah this is kind of a masterpiece. If you don't see some beauty in the chorus of My Girls, I don't know what to tell you. It's an interesting progression into maturity to hear this band go from screaming about growing up, playing tribal tunes, and complaining about college to crooning about their desire for a simple life with a house and a wife but it's unmistakably still the same writers. Amazing production, amazing sequencing, amazing emotion, recommended for edgier fans of Brian Wilson.
There are some pretty off the wall ideas and sounds over here but at its core this is just a really exuberant and danceable pop album, this Aussie gives it five McFeasts from Macca's out of five
AC's best album and one of my all-time favorites. Here's a totally subjective track ranking: Brother Sport > My Girls > Bluish > Lion In a Coma > Summertime Clothes > Also Frightened > No More Runnin > Daily Routine > In the Flowers > Taste > Guys Eyes Also check out their Fall Be Kind EP for more of this style, especially What Would I Want? Sky and I Think I Can
This is one of those albums you have to experience everywhere. I've listened to this with headphones, on tiny speakers, and with large speakers and a bass system. I've listened to this while on a train, trying to sleep, working, high on edibles, even on shrooms. Just like mbv's Loveless, there's a lot of ways to experience the album and break down everything happening. It's a psychedelic pop masterpiece: Animal Collective's proudest and most accessible moment. The songs completely envelop you. It's immensely colorful and bright. The vocals are clear, and the lyrics are optimistic and engaging. The synths are used to advance their creativity in psychedelia, tools that had been developing for a decade following Flaming Lips's reinvention of the genre. Some tracks you can dance to, while at other things they serve a more artistic purpose, to wow the audience and glue the tracks together as part of a large continuous scheme. Track ordering is perfect. Starts off with the fan favorite "In The Flowers," setting the standard for the impressive weirdness you're in store for. The next four songs are the accessible pop hits to entice any newcomers to the wonderful world of psychedelic synthpop. The rest of the album has their own merits. They're dynamic, constantly evolving, and very fun to listen to while high. Pick and choose your favorites, but I love them all. I find them all super memorable. There are moments to groove along, and there are moments to just pause and appreciate what's happening. Reminds me of Bjork's work here and there, but mostly The Beatles and Beach Boys during their psychedelic phases. The album ends with the optimistic "Brother Sport." I adore the repetition in this album. Some may find it excessive, but I find it works really well, especially when it takes the focus while noises shift in the background. "Brother Sport" is based around this idea in each of its stages and it leaves with a satisfactory happy ending.
Je n'ai aucun souvenir de cet album, et pour cause, un événement tragique a eu lieu ce week end. Replongeons nous dans le contexte. Vous n'êtes pas sans savoir que mon camarade d'écoute, robsepulturière, a récemment pris un grand tournant dans sa vie. En effet, dans la continuité de l'emergence de ses idéaux musicaux extrêmes, il décidé d'emmenager en Allemagne pour se rapprocher de Kraftwerk et NEU75. Il faut savoir que rob, s'étant récemment fait virer de son cabinet d'avocats suite à ses prises de paroles musicales intempestives, est en grande difficulté financière. C'est pour cela que rob a choisi de vivre en famille d'accueil en Allemagne. C'est là, au sein de cette famille, que l'impesable va se produire. Alors que rob ouvrait la porte menant à l'intérieur du domicile de sa famille, il fut directement intercepté par la mère, horrifiée. En effet, cette dernière avait retrouvé un CD des Crusarders caché entre les chaussettes de rob. Pour "purifieren" rob selon ses termes, elle se décida à lui jouer une chanson de Michael Kiwanuka. Or, Michael Kiwanuka vien tde faire son entrer dans la liste des 1001 albums du générateur. Rob a donc brisé le serment générateurien, en écoutant une chanson n'ayant pas encore été générée... Mais ce n'est la que le début des rebondissements, la suite dans le prochain review.
Un album sympathique mais très froid, un peu comme l'air qui soufflait dans mes cheveux tout au long de la promenade durant laquelle j'ai écouté celui-ci. J'ai d'ailleurs croisé plusieurs animaux parmi lesquels des chiens et des chevaux. Vous avez probablement eu connaissance du scandale auquel j'ai pris part et qui a été dénoncé par mon compagnon d'écoute et rival elpouletbasquaise. Voici ma version des faits. Vous savez comme moi que la dernière édition du grimoire de Robert contient désormais l'album Kiwanuka de Michael Kimanuka, projet que j'avais d'ailleurs déjà écouté avant qu'il ne soit introduit. Vous savez tout aussi bien que, pour pouvoir prétendre aux 1001 vierges promises par Robert au terme de la liste, il est interdit à quiconque d'écouter la moindre chanson issue de celle-ci. Et justement. Il y a quelques jours, la mère de ma famille d'accueil me demanda si je connaissais un certain Michael Kiwanuka. Je lui répondis que je le connaissais évidemment, tout au contraire d'elpouletbasquaise qui, soit dit en passant, est un odieux personnage. Prenant ma réponse affirmative pour une invitation à faire entendre l'un de ses morceaux, celle-ci lança l'un d'eux, à savoir Love & Hate. Je vérifiai comme à l'habitude que la chanson n'apparaissait pas dans son album générable, et une fois ceci fait, appréciai alors la musique l'esprit léger. Un rapide coup d'œil en direction de l'écran de téléphone duquel sortait le son me fit entrevoir la pochette de l'album interdit. Cette apparition totalement injustifiée me fit croire à une transgression des règles du générateur, j'appelai donc Robert pour implorer son pardon, sans savoir que j'étais dans mon droit. Robert me l'accorda mais promut elpouletbasquaise au rang de bras droit. Revenons maintenant à ma promenade. À mon retour, au moment d'insérer la clé dans la serrure, je m'aperçus qu'elle avait été forcée. J'entrai donc à mon domicile et rejoignis le salon. Quelle ne fut ma surprise de découvrir la mère de ma famille d'accueil ligotée sur le sol. Au niveau de sa tempe était dirigé un pistolet silencieux appartenant à l'inquiétant Norbert Episode (l'espion apparu dans ma critique de Destroyer de Kiss). Celui-ci rangea son arme, s'avança vers moi puis chuchota à mon oreille les mots suivants: « Revirements dentaires ». J'allai aussitôt me coucher en ressassant ce qu'il venait de me dire : « Revirements dentaires, revirements dentaires... Mais bien sûr ! "Revirements dentaires" était une anagramme de "Dernier avertissement"... » J'avais été menacé.
A masterpiece of folk psychedelica
So good and groovy! Would love a relisten. 9
I loved this, Animal collective is so weird and cool. This album reminds me of Age of Adz in a lot of ways. The second half is what really sold me on this, the first part up until Daily Routine was good felt a bit monotonous. 9/10
really enjoyed the vibes from this album!!
It’s a good album. Chill and indie. The first time I actually heard a song from this album was when I was at this girls place I had a crush on in college.
What is there to say about this album that hasn't already been said? It's one of the most inventive pop albums of all time and it has some of my favorite synth riffs and arpeggios of all time. The lyrics and general vibe create such a beautiful everlasting summertime vibe. There isn't a time where I would decline listening to Merriweather Post Pavilion in its entirety. Highlights: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7.
Love this. Music like this makes me listen attentively, and really think about how the hell they made it. I associate this album with big phase of musical discovery and expansion of my taste, constant gig-going in London, saw them in Brixton just after this was released. frantic, visceral, live, immediate, expansive. Listening to this again makes me feel really happy. It's been a while. Brother Sport is genius, its like a chaotic psychedelic club tune, the tension builds in the noise and instead of the beat dropping, the cheerful melody does !
Very interesting alternative album. Psycho, choir, classic synths - great
One of the great albums.From the get go...the build up and the drums at 02:31 of 'In the flowers' and we are off!!inventive,hypnotic a new discovery every listen...great stuff altogether
good shit, it’s like Oneohtrix Point Never meets MGMT meets LCD Soundsystem 10/10 album, I definitely need to look into more of their discography
One of my all time favorites
Lush Beach Boys harmonies and wild electronic experiments? I’M IN! This was fantastic fun! So interesting and engaging. Brother Sport was the perfect finale!
Really good album, not a bad song in it. I especially like In The Flower and My Girls.
My partner had this album on his list a couple of months ago. He described it as "torture". I think this is where our neuros diverge, because listening to this album was like a spa day for my ears and brain. Love it!
7. Might need to relisten since I did this across multiple stints of driving and navigating, but it seemed pretty good but nothing stood out
Reminds me a bit of Bitte Orca by Dirty Projectors that we heard very early on in this project. It's got elements of pop and elements of electronica but goes in unexpected directions. I had it mostly in the background today, which was fine. Not much really caught my attention. I liked it but don't see it becoming a favorite. I laughed hard at the title Guys Eyes, which I assume is a reference to my favorite line from Rosemary's Baby.
This was something new, and different...or was it...because it sounded like the same thing over and over... I liked it, but maybe that is because "i'm on vacation" and it is a chemically-induced experience. Wink, wink, nudge, nudge....
It's a pretty hectic album. I liked it but it made me feel funny and I needed to sit down for a while after listening to it.
Never really gave Animal collective much of a listen before this. This album really ticks a lot of boxes for me in terms of style its experimental nature and psychedelic influences. Really enjoyed it and one I’ll come back to more frequently.
Have you ever spat cum onto the floor of a Travel Lodge? I'm going to bite your genitals off. About as arousing as a cot death.
Didn't hate it but most songs just fell flat for me.
I enjoyed listening to this today, but it wasn't able to grab much of my attention (repetitive electronica tends to seep out of my consciousness if I try to do anything else, like drive or make dinner). But maybe this sort of music is supposed to seep into our subconscious, so on that metric, it succeeded splendidly and pleasantly.
This record is intelligent, well-executed, and after two or three playthroughs has left barely a biscuit crumb in my head. Applying electronic oddness to baroque, Brel, Piaf or Walker-type chanteur pieces is a neat idea, albeit one Bowie perhaps perfected earlier. This washed passed me on repeat so politely that I had to concentrate to notice individual songs. Maybe the songs aren’t strong enough, but I think this is more a problem of vibes: the singing and melodies belong to a noughties trend towards whimsy and songs that hover in the background with ordering-a-café-latte vocals. For a contrast, go back a couple of decades and see how those young geeks in Slint used their frail voices to dramatic effect.
The Bleach Boys
This album grew on me as I listened to it, as my intial thoughts were more along of the lines of "they experimented so much they forgot to make an actual song". That being said, still don't think it's anything crazy. Every song is reverb effect, repeat a line for three minutes, add jungle noises. Like, I like some stuff, but even those often didn't turn into something I liked until too late, such as Bluish. Not to say the songs all sound the same, because they don't, but they do all have the same general formula that gets repetitive in one sitting. I do like how each how each song goes into the next, I'm a sucker for that stuff, but most of the songs don't stand on their own when needed.
This was a pretty easy listen. Other than the ethereal aspects of the production, there really isn't anything that stuck out enough for me to want to listen to again.
There certainly is creativity here, it just fails to reach me
Okay I guess, but this is the kind of album that you listen to and immediately forget about afterwards.
I started out hating this but it grew on me over time, up to a point. A lot of it feels like disorganized cacophony. Some of the 'songs' that are decent go on for too long or degenerate into repetitive noise. Every song on the album is about 90 seconds too long. Indulgent, smell your own farts songwriting.
I just felt like it was too much going on, didnt really like the mesh of instruments. Though it was an interesting listen, not my style.
0/10 did not enjoy
More psychedelia... unlike Country Joe & The Fish, there was no blues evident at all - just sound effects. I found this unlistenable.
Was happy to get this - I have two (unheard) Animal Collective albums in my collection (not this), and remember MPP being highly praised during a period I didn't listen to much new music. First impression: yeah, you want to establish that electronica Beach Boys production vibe (we all know what I think about the Beach Boys, of course), wrong audience sorry!; later: sounds like Vampire Weekend and Matt and Kim (Christ!) fighting in a broom cupboard; finally: this is annoying as hell, turn it the fuck off! At the least, I regained some hard drive space. Cruel, but deserves the 1* PS - I quite like the Panda Bear/Sonic Boom collaboration, although it does basically follow the same listening experience outlined above
Been there done that, Great Album
Nonnih, tuleehan täältä sitä hyvääkin indietä. Tää on se, miten Beach Boysin ja ehkä Beatlesinkin perintöä siirretään onnistuneesti 2000-luvulle. Ihanan kesäistä pop-trippailua. Ja aina löytyy jotain uutta ja parhaat biisit vaan paranee (Bluish !!). Vaatii tosin ihan ok äänentoiston, että toimii. Kämäsillä napeilla kuulosti joskus tosi lattealta.
Ai jai. Tässä on kyllä ihan maagiset saundit, jaksaa kyllä kuunnella vuodesta toiseen. Oikeestaan kaikki biisit on konsistentisti tosi hyviä, paitsi Lion in a Coma ja ehkä Brother Sporttia ei aina jaksa. 5/5 kesäalbumi. Lievästä meemistatuksesta huolimatta on tää sen verran lähempänä vitosta kun nelosta että ehkä sen voi antaa.
Fun and fresh
I REALLY like this. This band was WAY ahead of their time. Definitely going to listen more.
Open up your open up your open up your
With music from the last 20 years or so, it seems harder to pick what the really BIG important albums are - but to me this is one of them. I can see why this isn't for everyone, as it definitely is an experimental album, but they tempered it with... I wouldn't go so far as to say a poppiness, but there is a certain sweetness that makes their experimentation into a thing of thrilling beauty. They constructed such an incredibly rich, cinematic sound that it comes across like a constantly shifting sonic environment, which is particularly dazzling on headphones. Like a series of carnival rides all linked together, where you start on the gravitron, then transition into the roller coaster, and then smoothly onto the swirling teacups, one right after the other. Animal Collective sound like they come from an alternate timeline in which Brian Wilson and the Beach Boys completed and released Smile in 1967, whereupon it set the world on fire, forever changing music as we know it. I want to live in that world. Listening to this album may be the closest I will ever get to feeling like I do. Something else I remember feeling when I first heard this album was that they had truly found a new sound. A sound that felt unique and modern, while still remaining largely pleasant and palatable. Eschewing both the standard guitar/bass/drums of rock, as well as the dance oriented tendencies and cliches of most electronic music, they carved out new territory between the two somehow. I think that is quite an amazing achievement really. At the very least, they have a truly original, identifiable sound of their own. Career wise, it took them awhile to find the right balance of elements, but they figured it out here and undoubtedly produced their best work.
Keep it real, give a real shout-out
4.5 stars, probably the peak Animal Collective album. I think the whole album is fantastic, only thing that detracts a half star is that it's such a maximalist assault on the senses that a full, uninterrupted listenthrough can get a little much for my brain to process. Not quite as many peaks and valleys as an AnCo album like "Strawberry Jam". "My Girls" is one of the most iconic songs of the 00s, "Bluish" one of my favorite love songs, and"Brother Sport" an all-time album closer. Rounding my rating up instead of down this time to help the average against the philistines who will inevitably give this a 2 or something.
Thank you 1001albums for showing me the majesty of Animal Collective. They have somehow learned how to turn my idyllic hopes for my childrens futures into song! It’s what I imagine charging a spirit bomb feels like. How three people?(One is listed as a panda bear) managed to harness the power of hope and weaponize it into synth folk pop is flabbergastery of the highest order. I wonder if this is what saint walker felt when charging his ring? Anyway check out merriweather post pavilion if you want to feel better about literally everything in the multiverse.
an old favorite
this is the first album i've generated that i've already heard before and luckily i already love it. "summertime clothes" is still such a bop and "bluish" has grown on me a ton and is also way more shoegaze-y than i remember. i didn't even remember "taste" but now that's probably one of my favorite songs on the album. the soundscapes in the background of these songs are like a psychedelic rainforest and it's incredible. i had a little bit of a worry that i wouldn't like it as much as i had when i first heard it but nope: it's still great and i honestly might like it more than before.
Weird, psychedelic, noisy, and yet very listenable and groovy. Sort of has an indie electronica thing going on. I don't think I had ever heard of Animal Collective before, and I certainly don't recognise any of the songs. However I must say that I enjoyed this a lot. The weird psychedelic indie synth-pop vibe of this album is very down my alley, and it's just a shame that I had no previous knowledge of the album. Definitely one I'll come back to. Favourite: Brother Sport
It’s hazy, layered, droney, pop and it’s fantastic. Animal Collective does a great job filling every song with all the sounds without giving me anxiety, this is a good one to have an edible and throw some good headphones on for. My Girls still holds up as an indie classic but it’s not the only jam here, Summertime Clothes, Brother Sport are both excellent as well. This whole album is awesome, even the cover is trippy. great summer vibe tunes here. 5 stars
Funnily enough, this is one of Animal Collective’s most accessible albums. This experimental suite like record weaves elements of noise, ambient, and electronic music together with a sunny almost Beach Boys like core. The result is a wonderfully disorienting yet deeply resounding piece of music.
My fav. It all just fits. Beautiful sounds, the cover sums it up exactly. Big at the peaks, soft when it needs to be. Conceptually sound. Favourite type of album done right. Big influence on my taste. SOT: All of them 5/5
The absolute most important record in Animal Collective's discography, Merriweather Post Pavilion gathers every sound they've gotten their hands on up to that point and allows it to gleam and shine as though it was radiating with a sense of purpose. This is what the sound of the zeitgeist sounds like and it just so happened to have come out at the most appropriate time, when the last vestiges of alternative/indie rock still held on to the imaginations of those who still thought of it as a world-beater and the nucleus of the culture. Some may say they've soared before this, some may claim they did afterward. All that is known is that they wouldn't come out of it the same way again.
Although I listened to a lot of indie in 2009, I somehow missed them. What a shame, because this record is fantastic.
better than i remembered it. definitely gonna come back to this again and again
Very trippy. I like
It's a polyphonic masterpiece. It kind of swims back and forth between Panda Bear's poppy, saccharine vibes and the dark psych tastes of other members. Truly an album that is more than the sum of its parts, and a modern classic in my mind. This had a huge impact on my taste when I listened to it during high school.
The contrast between the first two reviews currently topping this section is hilarious. Personally, I feel like eating an apple this morning, instead of digging my brain so as to find a clever line. Sure sign that I will give this album a 5/5 grade--truth be told, I've loved it for a long time now, even if I remember how dumfounded I was by it at first, when it came out in 2009. Not that the other review panning this record isn't smart in its own way. Yet I feel like using your intellect to judge *Merriweather Post Pavilion* will never do it justice anyway. This a communal, instinctive, trance-like party album. You need to let go to "get" its peculiar dynamics, hence why so many folks talk about drugs and being high in their reviews. Not so many records work like that in the 21st century. You usually need to return to the 60s and the 70s to find such brilliant experimental pop records, sonically daring, yet also paving the way for promising popular developments in the future. I know AC themselves would probably fret a little about the obvious references (they went down into rabbit holes far more obscure than the names I'm about to drop), but think Beach Boys, the 13th Floor Elevators or The Seeds with 21st century sounds (most specifically electronic when it comes to *Merriweather Post Pavilion*). There are too many highlights in this LP to mention them all. "In The Flowers" is a gem--a telluric opener whose rumbling rhythm evokes ancient deep forces of the earth ; "My Girls" is obviously one of the catchiest, most endearing tracks Animal Collective has ever written--one where it's easy to relate to the feelings of its narrator wishing to settle with his family at last ; the final vocal climax in "Also Frightened is a magical moment--it feels personal and heartfelt, and yet in keeping with the psychedelic mysteries gracing this LP from start to finish ; and "Brother Sport" is a riotous closer that leaves a lasting impression long after the album is over Funny coincidence: last week, I have interviewed Animal Collective's Deakins and Geologist for a music website I write for. Their latest album *Isn't It Now?* has just been released, by the way, and if you enjoyed *Merriweather Post Pavillion*, check it out, it's one of their best LPs in their twenty-year+ discography. We didn't really discuss this 2009 breakthrough record the 1001 Albums app has selected for me today--Deakins didn't play on it, he was on a sort of amicable hiatus with the band at the time (all the band members have done this at some point or another during AC's career, an open-door philosophy that is quite rare in the music business). So I didn't feel it was appropriate to mention said record during the interview. And we didn't have a lot of time on our hands for the interview anyway... That said, what I took away from this moment I shared with two of the band members is that they're never been the trendy hipsters some of the reviewers see in them when you browse through this section's reviews. Today's trends being very different from the band's adventurous knack for noise, hectic surges, and goofy moments, I'm not so surprised by the current low global score they received in this app. But I'm confident the wheel will turn again and that they'll find fans in the next generations. So yeah, past trends can't fully explain Animal Collective's appeal, whether back in 2009 or now. The topics and moods conveyed through each of their records indeed follow their progression from young adult artists to middle-aged ones--it all seems very sincere, and devoid of any calculated thoughts about hypes and fashionable sounds (Pitchfork's usual raves about them be damned). They're just doing their thing, and since their brains are wired in a very idiosyncratic manner, the results have always been off-kilter for a lot of casual listeners. Yet once you dig a little further, beyond all the unexpected layerings and weird arrangements, you can sense a real heart beating in most of the band's songs. It just takes a little time to "get" it somehow. But once you get it, this never gets old, believe me. Number of albums left to review: 393 Number of albums from the list I find relevant enough to be mandatory listens: 275 (including this one) Albums from the list I *might* include in mine later on: 144 Albums from the list I won't include in mine (many others are more essential to me): 193
Another of my all time favourites. Such a euphoric album. The harmonies. The beats. Brian Wilson pushed to his logical conclusion. I love the complexity of the songs though, it took me a while to really fall in love with this, at first I kinda hated it, after really liking (mainly) Feels and Strawberry Jam. But it unwraps itself on repeat listens. My Girls a personal theme of ours, particularly in our small family's early years and our search for a habitable home. No more runnin (says my mind) is a glorious paeon to just stopping and being. Shutting up all the nagging thoughts. Love it.
I’m fascinated by the way rhythms overlap on this album. As a former drummer (once a drummer, always a drummer), I love listening to offbeat rhythms or oddball time signatures. On song after song, Animal Collective introduces a series of beats, rhythms and melodies that at first seem to conflict. But give it a minute and everything clicks into place. This is dense, layered music but the big picture is stunning every time. Listening to the beginnings of these songs is like watching someone put together a puzzle of an abstract shape. It looks wrong at first but in time, the full strangeness of the picture takes shape and makes sense. What really helps this music work though are the emotions. Animal Collective have a big heart and these songs resonate with earnestness. The music also captures a childlike wonder and sense of play. As complex and intricate as the music gets, it doesn’t feel pretentious to me. They sound like they had a lot of fun experimenting in the studio (and presumably smoked a lot of weed). And as polished as the final product is, it still has that feeling of friends goofing around. For years I appreciated Animal Collective at a bit of a distance. This album came out when I was in college and I respected it without fully embracing it. But last year Animal Collective put out a great album called “Time Skiffs” that unlocked their sound for me. It’s a lighthearted album of psychedelic pop and very approachable by their standards. I read a review of that album that referred to the Beach Boys influence in their music and that comment hit me like a bolt of lightning. I’d hadn’t thought of that before but once you hear it, it’s hard to miss. The way they harmonize is right out of the Beach Boys playbook. And that bass drum thump in “My Girls” could easily be a timpani hit lifted off of “Pet Sounds.” This album has grown on me over the years and it gets better and better. Classic album cover too. Very trippy.
Oooooooh yea. This album is poppy and fun, but also experimental, which makes for a cool and varied experience. One of my favorites when it comes to psychedelic pop.
I rather enjoyed this collection of upbeat psychedelic pop, which is full of ambition, euphoria, electronic noises, catchy tunes, vibrant vocals, the works. Its kitchen sink production might put some people off but I like it. Sod it, I'm giving it a 5 :)
5 stars for the nostalgia alone. This is one of the defining albums of my life, and I’m glad to hear that it holds up so well. Just an absolute joy.
Not for everyone but definitely my king of music. This was the top of my Top 50 list in 2009, here’s what I wrote then: Animal Collective really came into their own in 2009. They are still one of the weirder bands out there, but they are paying more attention to songs and melody and the result is both one of their more interesting and out there albums to date. Like Radiohead, they do their own thing and the other bands can only watch- the only difference is Animal Collective is several shades more out there than Radiohead. At points scary, beautiful, psychedelic, spacy, experimental, catchy and just plain messed up, they still are not for everyone- in fact, I believe they remain an acquired taste. But it's my favorite album of 2009, and that's what this list is all about.
One of the most insane and impressive auditory experiences ever. From the start of the first track, you have no inkling that there is going to be loads of catchy poppy choruses on this album, but there are, all over. The first time I heard this album, it was like sensory overload. After my 5th listen, I can really appreciate the production and all the keyboard stuff that happens. One of a kind album, and my belief that this is Animal Collective's masterpiece, and they already have a lot of great albums
I liked it.
Pretty good sound. I like it!
Really enjoyable listen, a few tracks that were mumbled thru, but overall a great experience. Should hunt down more Animal Collective!!
Very good art pop. A little out there but in a good sense.
Most modern album I've had so far
Ah yes, the college freshman bedroom poster album. It's actually pretty dang good, or is that just my nostalgia?
Yeah, shimmery synth drones and Beach Boys-esque vocal harmonies and jangly psych biz. There are some definite 5 star tracks, but it's not quite consistent enough to get 5 stars overall. Fave track - "My Girls" - great tune!
This album is very, very good. I listened to the whole thing thinking it was by Glass Animals. It's not. It's by Animal Collective. These are two different bands. Glass Animals is better. But this album is very good.
Have always meant to check this band out. Sounds great and will require additional listens.
Interesting sounds but there weren’t many climactic or exciting moments to make the 5-6 minute songs more interesting. 7
“Merriweather Post Pavilion” by Animal Collective (2009) Sometimes asking oneself “What the hell IS this?” prompts an exploration that yields unexpected (if unsurprising) insights. This album is a case in point. If you’re not familiar with this album or this musical style (as I am not), I recommend starting with track two, “My Girls”—it’s much more accessible than the opening track. Three guys, two of whom (I believe) operate twin sampling decks (probably mixed with each dominating one of the two stereo channels), and one in the middle on electronic keyboards. The lyrics are basically first person reflections of a family man who loves his wife, his children, his brother, and his now deceased father—wholesome affections seeking wise expression, and very conscious of his own personal responsibilities. The music is complex and innovative. Its central quality, however, is that is so extraordinary. If it ever becomes ordinary, it will age quickly and lose its power. Melodies studiously avoid the expected. Unremarkable voices, but arranged in harmonies that are attractive (Beach Boys comparisons are apt, especially on “Guys Eyes”—Beatles and Jane’s Addiction on “Taste”). Mechanical rhythms. Several tracks segue successively, rather than just break, giving the album a cohesion that fits well with lyrical thematic unity. But as long as you guys are sampling, you could have used some really cool African drums on “Lion in a Coma” and “Brother Sport”. This is the kind of album that will require time to fully appreciate, but likely worth it. 4/5
The far-reaching effects of this album on pop in the last 10 years is wild. Very cool modern psychedelia.
I’m a fan of Animal Collective. Their music is all at once elated, trippy, imaginative, childlike and oddly infused with nostalgia. This to me is what post modernist music should be. It’s the sensible trajectory for pop music to have taken. Jumbles of harmonic samples from the past, a full palette of noises gleaned from what exists. I really enjoy this album. It’s meditative and trance like. However, I find that it doesn’t reach the heights of the albums preceding it: Strawberry Jam and Feels, which both ultimately seem to have more concrete song construction, whereas this seems to flow meditatively from one song to another. This is definitely volume up, listen in a dark room, maybe while high, music. Or just sunny day music.
Not my usual style of music but I enjoyed the entire album very much. Weird but just enough to make it interesting.
Another I haven’t heard before but wish I had. Lots of layers of noise and feedback creating something quite unique
Delightful psychedelic pop. I need to give this a proper listen, I don’t think driving to work on my car speakers does it a justice.
Very interesting. No idea about genre lol