Primus - Animals Should Not Try To Act Like People
Animals Should Not Try To Act Like People is a 5 track EP released with a DVD, which shares the same title. The CD marked the first Primus recording with previous drummer, Tim 'Herb' Alexander since the release of 1995's 'Tales From The Punchbowl'. Between 1996 & 2001 Primus had drummer Brian "Brain" Mantina, who interestingly enough was set to be Primus's drummer in 1989 until he broke his foot and Tim was called in. This was released and a 64 show tour followed, which included a japanese date also.
The CD has recieved mixed reviews from fans, some who love certain tracks, others who hate certain tracks. Personally, I am a massive fan of Primus and have loved everything they have released, so bear with me if you think my ratings are too much. The CD combines styles of old but also introduces a new Primus, which was previously only known when they had played live; Jam. The songs on the CD are long (3 tracks are over 6 minutes), and this combined with the live gigs after the album was released shows that Primus have shifted to an almost 'Pink Floyd' like style, and as it happens, many Primus fans are indeed Floyd fans so this combination has clicked for many fans.
The opening track, Carpenter And The Dainty Bride
, introduced the idea of a long intro, which is also heard on The Last Superpower aka Rapscallion
(track 4) and My Friend Fats
(track 5). The build up is usually a combination of feedback from Les with harmonics on delay, except on 4 & 5 when Ler and Herb are present with this. The intros help build up the whole feel of the song, and when played live gives the band the ability to jam out the song very well. Track three, Mary The Ice Cube
also has a long intro, but it is not just feedback, it is actual notes. The only song that has a direct intro is track 2, Pilchers Squad
, which jumps straight into the song.
Most songs on this album are uncomparable to other tracks by Primus, which I see is a good thing as it shows Primus's evolution and progression.
1. The Carpenter And The Dainty Bride
As stated before, this song starts with a long intro (1:49 until the actual song kicks in with the verse). Ler's guitar is VERY treble in this song, which gives a feel like he is playing right next to the bridge of the guitar to get this sound. Les uses a fretless for this song, and so the usual haunting notes of a fretless bass are featured. The guitar solo uses dissonance and reverb to create a huge sound. Les's vocals are unlike what he has done before, a loud whiper is how I could best describe his vocal 'effect'. This is a good opener.
2. Pilchers Squad
This song is considered Primus's worst by some fans, to which I greatly
disagree. This song shows the explosive random talent of guitarist Larry 'Ler' Lalonde, especially during the 4 second solo (Les: "Go Ler! ... "Thanks Ler!"). I would compare this song probably closest to Is It Luck
from the 1992 album Sailing The Seas Of Cheese
, though it is much different from that too. A short static song, but I love it.
3. Mary The Ice Cube
A very trippy song of sorts. The bass is once again fretless to create a stoner effect, or something like that. Guitar isn't a big feature in this song, it is mostly drums and bass, with Ler playing the occasional clean notes, and a distored solo. Most of Les's singing is overdubbed with Les singing an octave below, but in an almost talking-like fashion. Personally I don't smoke weed or drugs at all, but I reckon this song would mess with your head, but then again, thats just a guess.
4. [The Last Superpower aka Rapscallion
This has to be the one of the best tracks Primus have ever produced. Everything about this song defines Primus in everyway I believe, Jumpy static guitar (think the verse of Antipop's (1999) Laquerhead). The chorus guitar line is catchy but not in a pop kind of way. The guitar solo is very identifiable to Larry; the use of dissonance, the insane reverb and the whole song even changes tempo for the guitar solo. The bass 'solo' isn't so much a solo as it is a build up, which uses the harmonics on delay again and Tim on a tiny cymbal. After the bass break, the song breaks back into the verse then a final chorus to close the song. At the very end of the song you heard Ler saying "It sounded like an ending", hinting that this song was recorded with the whole band.
5. My Friend Fats
Tim opens this song, with Les entering later with the fretless bass doing slides with delay, while Ler plays along with the drums. The chorus riff is very cool. Les's vocals are quiet evil during the chorus, its not words, but high pitched moans of sorts, otherwise he is loudly whispering again. I don't listen to this song often, though many fans consider it a favourite.
I'm not going to document everything on the DVD, but here's the breakdown:
John the Fisherman
Too Many Puppies
Jerry Was a Race Car Driver
Tommy the Cat
My Name Is Mud
Wynona's Big Brown Beaver
Over the Falls
Shake Hands With Beef
The Devil Went Down To Georgia
'Horrible Men' assortments of live clips
'Horrible Swill' assortments of live clips from the Brown Album era
Duchess And The Proverbial Mind Spread (On some DVDs it is listed as Kalamazoo live)
My Name Is Mud (Live at Woodstock 94)
Those Damned Blue Collar Tweekers (Live at Woodstock 94)
This EP is fantastic, and the DVD is just superb. A must have for anyone who is a fan, and anyone who isn't too.