Animal Collective
Merriweather Post Pavilion


4.5
superb

Review

by Andru Okenuf USER (31 Reviews)
April 7th, 2011 | 56 replies | 4,795 views


Release Date: 2009 | Tracklist

Review Summary: An album that means so many different things to so many different people succeeds on so many levels

1 of 1 thought this review was well written

“If I could just leave my body for a night” sings Panda Bear 3 minutes into the opening track, ‘In the Flowers,’ before the mystical phantasm that is Merriweather Post Pavilion rears its head in beautiful chaos for the first time. It's the 20th time I've heard this song, but chills still run down my spine as if it was my first.

But let’s back up for a second. For those who have successfully boxed themselves into a world devoid of hipsters, Animal Collective is:

David Portner (Avey Tare)
Noah Lennox (Panda Bear)
Brian Weitz (Geologist)
Josh Dibb (Deakin – not featured on this album)

If you've heard any Animal Collective at all, it’s the album’s second track, 'My Girls,' which is found on the iPod of almost anyone with even the faintest interest in indie rock. And there is a lot to like – a steady domesticated beat, flowing rhythms and a track that is both catchy and unique, but this is nowhere near the best the album has to offer. More probably, the best song on the album is 'Bluish,' a track subtly written about giving cunnilingus, but one that also happens to be one of the most beautiful tracks ever recorded. “It makes me so crazy, though I can’t say why” may be what Panda Bear’s thinking as he eats out his girlfriend or that lucky bimbo he just met at a bar, yet it also details the essence of the song. It’s difficult to pinpoint exactly what it is that’s so alluring, but as it just floats about so gorgeously, it is a difficult thing not to admire.

‘Also Frightened’ serves as a perfect lead in to the crucial ‘Summertime Clothes,’ and with them comes an incredibly palpable yearning for romance and you see a boy who is scared of what this means. The beat behind the latter is as contagious as any on the album, and the more it engulfs you, the more you find yourself enjoying this gem, the more the rest of the album falls into place. And through and through, it is rock solid, with not a single track that is worth skipping. ‘Daily Routine’ is a well-made sensationalized 6 minute ode to your average day, ‘Guys Eyes,’ another album highlight, playfully promotes the craving to masturbate, and ‘No More Runnin’ could be the most inspired track on the album. The contagious and almost schizophrenic ‘Lion in a Coma’ is a beast well worth taming. As the quirky track about a long ignored animal instinct springs out and seduces you, it manages to simultaneously maintain its eerie façade while still coming together so smoothly.

Overall, this may not be a perfect 5, but it is close. As innovative and talented as Animal Collective is, they lack a clear vision which guides everything together. Merriweather Post Pavilion has an extraordinary amount of diverse tracks, and it manages to showcase some of the best experimental pop ever heard. But it is not the overarching record of the decade as many describe it because as effectively as it manages to impress on so many levels, it tries too hard to be so many different things. The album walks the line between accessible and detached, the line between pop and experimental and the line between mainstream and underground. It is truly a phenomenal feat to navigate all of these opposing forces so carefully, but doing so also leaves the album with a lack of a true identity.

Some people cannot take this album seriously because of how childish Animal Collective is, while others hate it because they believe it represents too impersonal a side to a band that once had so much raw energy. But closer ‘Brother Sport’ might be the best showcase of what Merriweather Post Pavilion is all about. About 3 minutes into the both frenzied and catchy closer, breathe deeply. If you aren’t trapped inside some 14 year old microcosm of yourself, you’re either intensely focused on something else or you’re probably desperately craving an end to the song. Yet this is as fine a line as Animal Collective has ever walked, and they manage to do so with such grace that the album is a resounding success.

and I want to walk around with you
just you just you just you just you




Recent reviews by this author
The xx CoexistThe Future Sound of London Lifeforms
Tricky MaxinquayeAnais Mitchell Young Man in America
Exoplanet Nothing Divides Us HereNicolas Jaar Don't Break My Love
user ratings (2180)
Chart.
3.9
excellent
other reviews of this album
1 of

Comments:Add a Comment 
Romulus
April 7th 2011



8411 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

“It makes me so crazy, though I can’t say why” may be what Panda Bear’s thinking as he eats out his girlfriend or that lucky bimbo he just met at a bar


ew

aok
April 7th 2011



4282 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

So in the process of writing an intro to 'Tomboy,' this popped out. I only read Lewis' review and as much as I liked it, I was a little irked he never mentioned 'Bluish.' I know there's a ton of reviews on this, and this might add nothing to the overall spectrum of stuff, but I had it so here it is.

Constructive criticism appreciated as always, and even though I have it rated as such, this might not actually be Animal Collective's best album, but it is certainly its most aproachable

psykonaut
April 7th 2011



3913 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

...is bluish really about cunnilingus?

ew [2]

aok
April 7th 2011



4282 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

i prefer an outside interpretation, and i fell in love with the song before someone's like 'dude that's about eating girls out'

read the lyrics with that in mind and decide for yourself: http://www.lyrics-celebrities.anekatips.com/bluish-lyrics-animal-collective

klap
Staff Reviewer
April 7th 2011



10250 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

nothing ew about munching box guys

Digging: The Bilinda Butchers - Heaven

Trebor.
Contributing Reviewer
April 7th 2011



49767 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

For sure.

Digging: Empire! Empire! (I Was a Lonely Estate) - You Will Eventually Be Forgotten

psykonaut
April 7th 2011



3913 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

i meant like the explicit image of noah lennox going down on a girl
just a bit weird

Trebor.
Contributing Reviewer
April 7th 2011



49767 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Just pretend it's you.

aok
April 7th 2011



4282 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

figured it was appropriate since the band is weird to begin with

TheSpirit
April 7th 2011



17135 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

nothing ew about munching box guys


12345... - 1,000,000

Digging: Monarch - Sabbracadaver

Romulus
April 7th 2011



8411 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

yeah agreed with psyko panda bear munching box is pretty ew

i think the fact that we're debating about the appropriateness of a member of animal collective eating out a girl speaks volumes about sputnik

psykonaut
April 7th 2011



3913 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

i think the fact that we're debating about the appropriateness of a member of animal collective eating out a girl speaks volumes about sputnik


lol'd

Trebor.
Contributing Reviewer
April 7th 2011



49767 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I don't even want to know what brothersport is about.

aok
April 7th 2011



4282 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

c'mon guys, i wrote a review (topic of discussion) about an album (topic of discussion) by a band
(topic of discussion). can we get over the fact that panda bear munches box?

psykonaut
April 7th 2011



3913 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

open up your throat for panda bear, baby.


plane
Staff Reviewer
April 7th 2011



6085 Comments


"Bluish" is more about the feelings and quiet moments leading up to oral sex than otherwise. Though the line "Only to get the urge to kiss you there" is kind of inescapable once you think of eating a girl out.

This album seems the most focused and direct than any other AC release though. Doesn't lack a vision.

aok
April 7th 2011



4282 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

lol -- that one's allegedly about getting his brother to talk more after their parents died but after the tone of the rest of the album ... well yea.

also, i still like to think 'bluish' is about sth else -- the song is so gorgeous

aok
April 7th 2011



4282 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

@lewis. first off loved your review of this album, and i agree that it's as much about leading there as well as being there ('i'm getting lost in your curls...')

in terms of vision -- i think that animal collective in general lacks vision, and though this is undeniably the most focused and direct animal collective has ever been, this is exceedingly playful and about a variety of simple pleasures. sometimes i don't think these pleasures tie together as completely as say 'moon safari' or any radiohead LP (aside from maybe httf) amongst many others.

Polymath
April 7th 2011



3836 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0 | Sound Off

Andy we can agree on something for once! Bluish is my favorites on this album (although I love every single song on this), the vocals are just completely brilliant.

aok
April 7th 2011



4282 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

c'mon now josh, we always agree on inertia creeps! and we'll agree on this ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AwUdMi8HFck ) as soon as you listen too



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





FAQ // STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2013 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Privacy Policy