Animal Collective
Merriweather Post Pavilion


4.5
superb

Review

by jjstephani USER (3 Reviews)
June 16th, 2009 | 27 replies | 3,997 views


Release Date: 2009 | Tracklist


1 of 3 thought this review was well written

Just as fellow indie-superheroes Grizzly Bear would do later in 2009, Animal Collective finally opened up to fans by making their music more accessible. The expression and emotion going into their work isn’t hiding behind layers of artistic creativity on Merriweather Post Pavilion, which means there is no escaping the incredible climaxes found on “My Girls” and “Summertime Clothes.” And the sophisticated moments don’t leave listeners hanging either as the expressiveness of the songwriting reaches new heights.

The first four songs make up the strongest first half of an album thus far 2009. Although they take time to ebb and flow, build up and break down, it is the patience it takes to swim through these tracks that makes them so rewarding. “In the Flowers” takes two and a half minutes to work up to a beat, but once it hits there’s no turning back. This formula is repeatedly successful as most songs clock in at over five minutes, but the intricately crafted production and songwriting allows listeners to feel like they are soaring to an exciting climax, rather than climbing uphill. Then the anticipation of what they’ll throw at you next is justified when “My Girls” gets you dancing and singing along with a perfectly flowing lyrical delivery and rolling, funky beat. Then this summit is reached again on the fourth track, “Summertime Clothes,” with success coming in similar areas; a flawless connection between rhythm and vocals.

“Daily Routine” provides a dazzling follow-up. It is slightly calmer and more contemplative, giving listeners a nice break to reflect on the depth of beauty the afore-mentioned production provides.
But here’s where their soundscapes lose a bit of clarity, leaving me to believe this album ever so slightly flawed. MPP is front-heavy. The first half lands such a punch to listeners’ psyche that it leaves them unavoidably entertained for the rest of the album, while the music never reaches the same climax.

“Bluish” only finds its stride when it hits the “chorus,” roughly beginning on 1:56 and 3:38. The rest of the song just tosses and turns, never settling into a natural flow. Moving on, “No More Running” is exquisite, “Taste” is badass and “Lion In a Coma” is creatively fun and nearly recaptures the early excitement, but (what I would call) the bridge really loses steam. Even “Brother Sport” amazes out of the gates, but certain sections linger beyond their welcome, leaving it about a minute too long to leave an exclamation point.

Overall, I acknowledge how phenomenal some of these songs are and how exquisitely crafted this album is. “Girls” and “Summertime Clothes” are both in my top 5 tracks of 2009, and the album as a whole will likely make 99% of all year-end lists, including mine. But it could be a more consistent package.
And since I want it all, I’m not going to bend my rules, not even for almighty Animal Collective.


user ratings (2186)
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3.9
excellent
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Comments:Add a Comment 
Gyromania
June 16th 2009



15200 Comments


The review was good, but you could have made it longer and went into more detail. I disagree entirely with you btw. Bluish and Lion in a Coma are easily the best two songs off of this album.

joshuatree
Emeritus
June 16th 2009



3743 Comments


how can you not like bluish or lion in a coma or brothersport they're some the best songs on here

NEG

Gyromania
June 16th 2009



15200 Comments


lol, see man, cam also knows what's up. brothersport is my third favourite, even if the middle section is a little boring from time to time.

mvdu
June 16th 2009



599 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

I guess I'm one of the few who is not enamored with this CD. IMO it starts out well, and then gets monotonous.

Electric City
Staff Reviewer
June 16th 2009



15727 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

wait a minute, you don't like brothersport? WHAT IS THIS

Digging: Alvvays - Alvvays

robertsona
Staff Reviewer
June 16th 2009



14990 Comments


"Even “Brother Sport” amazes out of the gates, but certain sections linger beyond their welcome, leaving it about a minute too long to leave an exclamation point." this is actually kinda true

robin
Emeritus
June 16th 2009



4241 Comments


brother sport completely died after i saw it live. actually it's still great.

Gyromania
June 16th 2009



15200 Comments


lion in a coma owns all.

Electric City
Staff Reviewer
June 16th 2009



15727 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

brother sport completely died after i saw it live. actually it's still great.


why? when I saw it it was the most euphoric thing ever

robertsona
Staff Reviewer
June 16th 2009



14990 Comments


bluish/in the flowers/brother sport are best for me (even though i just pseudo-dissed that last one haha)

robin
Emeritus
June 16th 2009



4241 Comments


why? when I saw it it was the most euphoric thing ever


because live he sings the outro in a cooler way so whenever i listen to it i want to hear that.

CelestialDust
June 16th 2009



3155 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

oh man i saw these guys live before radiohead went on last summer and i thought my head was gonna explode afterwords... i was like damn now i wont be able to hear radiohead i cant hear shitttttt

that was before i got into them lol i've only heard this album

shindip
June 16th 2009



3536 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Overrated album.

Chewie
June 16th 2009



4531 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

uggh I want this to be a 5

Gyromania
June 16th 2009



15200 Comments


THEN BUMP IT TO A 5.

I heard they were boring live (Animal Collective).

CelestialDust
June 16th 2009



3155 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

yeah and too loud, especially for how repetetive their songs are

Knott-
Emeritus
June 16th 2009



10194 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5 | Sound Off

it's overrated - still great, but after track 6 i sort of tune out quite a bit. brothersport is nowhere nearly as good as people claim.

Chewie
June 16th 2009



4531 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

BLASPHEMY

scyther
June 16th 2009



1606 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Summertime Clothes, Guys Eyes, Bluish and In The Flowers are my favorites. Brother Sport is alright, Lion In A Coma sucks, My Girls sucks, the rest are average Animal Collective shindigs.

thebhoy
Emeritus
June 16th 2009



4459 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

My Girls rules, so does Summertime Clothes. The rest are meh.



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