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Posts Tagged ‘Animal Collective’

Took a trip down south just a couple of miles, from my humble abode in Portland to the hometown of Oregon’s state animal, The Beaver. It was Corvallis, OR and a good time to visit; Halloween is OSU’s un/official holiday, there was to be a challenging home football game, I was visiting some of my oldest friends, we all had our bikes, and we were set with good music.

The first night was a tour of Portland, actually, with a couple of Big Red’s crazy-ay-yay-yay CoVo friends. It was raining a bit, as it always does, but we’d brave the elements on bike-back, the crazy kids would roam the streets, stirring up dust devils of mischief, and I would meet some very kind souls with some interesting stories to be told.

The next day was a day of slow momentum, starting off heavy and tired, but speeding up and getting more and more exciting and loud as we drove down to Corvallis, kind of like a giant, old steel train. When we got to Beavertown, there were more cars then ever, more people then ever, and more cops then ever. The recipe for a great night! We got to dress up and volunteer at this haunted house, where I was in a dizzying strobe-light room all night, dressed up as a dead tourist (9/11 tourist, since my shirt said “I ❤ NY”, but I figure, it might be too soon for that…). That night was crazy enough, but the next day, even nicer things were planned.

We got up at the crack of noon, and donned our hiking attire, put on some Animal Collective to set the mood and drove off to a waterfall that I had been told was one of the most scenic. With good people and good places, our day was off to a great start. We climbed around the river side, saw some gorgeous sites ingrain themselves in my memory receptors and shared some laughs and growls. Oh! and there were many rare Wood Formations, of the likes I had never seen before. The messecah walked again that day. It was one of his dark days.

From there, we returned back to town to find that the Beavers had won their game against some wack California team, though the town didn’t seem as “RAAAAGGGGGEEEEE” as I would have thought them to be behaving. We filled up on quality Hot-N-Ready pizza, got our second batch of costumes and face paints on, hopped on our bikes, met Detective Moustache and Laura, Devourer of Galaxies, and were on our way. Along the night, Captain Awesome danced in a sea of ladies on a stripper pole, and the Detective and I deduced that the Hulk’s buttocks was stuffed. Fred Flinstone did some push-ups for us, Bohemian Rhapsody was sung by us and the other street urchins loud-N-proud, A dirty pirate tried to rob of us of our dignity, and, somehow, Scrubs always just appeared, and played it real cool. Dammmmmn, scrubs.
Eventually, we found The Nest, but I do not know how. I think The Nest found us. It was full of wob-wob-wobwob-wob-wob music, and people who were very wavey and smiley, and potential dognappers, though the dog was one of those sad alcoholic doggies who licked up ground beer constantly. It was an interesting mix of people at The Nest: some were melted into the couch, others were becoming the Dubstep, some were just looking around in wonder, some were reveling in nostalgias of times past. Eventually, as always happens, the Dubstep takes over the room, but that was one of those beautiful, beautiful moments. ‘Everybody’s laughing… everybody’s happy…” Ah… we were all sun kings, that night.

So, that was just a little summary of what the weekend was like. I’m really excited by all that I saw, and I’m glad I opened myself up to what Redwood’s life is like. I dig it, like a spigot. I can’t wait to see what comes, cause this Fall is Being Kind. Here’s a lil playlist of what I’d say Corvallis in The Fall Time sounds like.

Enjoy! and check back in real soon for some exciting news to come.

Animal Collective- The Purple Bottle (870kbps) This song was how my heart felt for most of the weekend: a sort of fluttering, excited, head-bobbing, toe-tapping, silly-dancing feels. Most people do have this fantastic track, and if you don’t, GET IT, but I think you guys should get this one anyways, cause it’s the super-high-quality one, the Vinyl-quality recording. Tasty.

Hot Sugar- The Seagull Now, here’s a band I’m gonna begin following like the ice cream man. This song just oozes chilled ‘tude, and I’d listen to this again and again if I didn’t want to ruin the song for myself. It’s like if Ratatat and Royksopp had baby that was much prettier then them. Get it, if you wanna be cool. But it’s totally okay if you don’t want to be cool…

Talking Heads- This Must Be The Place (Young Edits Sophisticated Melody Version) Just walking around, in crazy tie-dye costume, next to a caped crusader, Edward Sharp and Detective Moustache, this song is basically what it was like. It’s a wonderful re-working of the song that keeps all the lovely Talking Heads-esque ness to it, while adding a crisper beat and some violins and flute that sound like underwater harpoons. Listen, and you’ll understand!

Riton- Banana Song Ah, this song is so calming, yet so fun. I’m pretty sure it’s just Pon De Floor by MAJAH LAZAH mixed with the “daylight come and me wanna go home” song, but it’s great. Reminds me of biking around at 3:30 AM under maples burning with fall’s color.

A-Track- Trizzy Turnt Up This song is a combination of all the shitty music we had to listen to as we went to various places, except I’m posting this song, cause it’s the one awesome remix of all those songs. Dude, they mention the purple bottle and soulja boy in one song. I mean, when we were at houses, I really WISH this was playing, but the autotune

The Knife- Like A Pen WHY WERE WE UP AT 7:00 IN THE MORNING? WHY ON GOD’S EARTH DID I APPROACH THAT NASTY SPIDER WHO WAS PROBABLY JUST TRYING TO CHILLAX, AND WHY WOULD I PUT IT SO CLOSE TO MY HANDS? WELL, OBVIOUSLY, YOU ARE DUMB, YOU ARE SO DUMB, HOMEBOY. AND I KNOW WHERE IT’S COMIN FROM! CAUSE I BACK TRACED IT!

Two Door Cinema Club- Something Good Can Work (Ted & Francis Remix) This song makes me feel real good, when there’s those little moments you don’t feel so Boss. Like, for me, I was a bit sad to have to leave Corvallis so soon, but, like this song says “Something good can work!”  Ya-ha!

Animal Collective- Loch Raven (Slowed Down) So, I had the idea to slow down some of my favorite tracks, like you could when albums came on vinyl, and this track came to mind. Low and behold, when I tried it, the results were fantastic. This version of this song really put me in different place, and it’s quite a good, comfy one.

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Wednesdays sometimes require a certain kind of disciple and dedication. It’s the farthest day you can be from the weekend, and I know that as soon as I wake up, that fact stares me straight in the face. Realizing that I have the option, if I really wanted to, to just stay in bed and sleep for ever and ever, I am almost defeated. It doesn’t help that I have a mattress pad that feels like a cloud filled with pure happiness, or that my comforter knows exactly just what temperature I’m most comfortable in, or that my pillow is one of those memory foam ones that conforms to the shapes of my head. It sure as hell doesn’t help that I didn’t get to sleep till four in the morning and my time of waking was supposed to be just three hours later. At that point, I allow myself the luxury that is Americanized sleep for just five more minutes (okay, maybe another hour…), but I don’t really sleep. I use this time to try my best to remember my dreams, to give myself a little guidance in the upcoming unknown day, and I use that time to reflect on all of the wonderful places and things I did in the day that came before this horrid Wednesday morning. I remember the friends I met, the souls I warmed, the ideas I encouraged, the lovers I made, the music I created, and the time I spent. None of this happened to anyone else on the Earth on that day; all of that happened because I made  conscious decisions that no one else could make, and because of that, I really enjoyed my day. Now, I get to thinking- what makes this day, Wednesday, any different from any other day? Is there anything really different about today then yesterday? Sure it may be a bit colder, sure it may be a different named day according to us silly humans, but all in all, it’s a day that holds just as much possibility as the one that came before it. It’s up to us to do something, take advantage of that fact that we are alive yet another day, and do what we think is good. And with this knowledge, and this playlist, I got up today, ready to spin some more destiny to more unsuspecting souls.

I’m up for the challenge- are you guys?
PS: First new vampire weekend track is in! Check it!

HumpDay Playlist:

1) Animal CollectiveTaste
2) Grizzly BearTwo Weeks
3) Led ZeppelinTangerine
4) Modest Mouse- Gravity Rides Everything
5) Menomena- Wet And Rustling
6) Volcano Choir- Island, IS
7) Blitzen TrapperWild Mountain Nation
8 ) Deerhunter- Game of Diamonds
9) Vampire Weekend- White Sky
10) Edward Sharp & The Magnetic ZerosHome
11) Animal Collective- For Reverend Green
12) Animal Collective- Fireworks

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animal crack boxAnimal Crack Box has had an interesting history, like much that has to do with Animal Collective. The three-disc vinyl-only collection had been discussed for years following the release of Hollinndagain, their first live album, but was always put off, as studio albums always seemed more appealing to the band. At first, there was only one actual copy of the album, made available on eBay to support Doctors Without Borders (a charity best known for helping third-world countries), but the vinyl collection was soon released commercially, with 1000 more copies put up for sale via Fusetronsound. Even with the lack of actual copies produced, thanks to the internet, the album is still widely available.

To the many fans Animal Collective picked up with Merriweather Post Pavilion, Animal Crack Box might be a very confusing step “forward,” because the live album’s sound more closely resembles their earlier work, rather then then the very focused pop-sprinkled sounds of Merriweather. However, the timing of this album really couldn’t be better. By releasing and re-instating this more-experimental side of their ever-changing sound, Animal Collective have let their fans know that they are still doing what ever they want, and that though Merriweather Post Pavilion may have skyrocketed them more into the limelight, that they will never become just the one thing.

For Animal Collective, the music has always been about the building energies between the band mates and the feeling of the musical piece as a whole. Crack Box showcases Animal Collective at their trippy best, with the only continuing beat throughout the experience being the syncing of Panda Bear’s soulful yelping to your very own climbing and dipping heartbeats. The varying members of Animal Collective have always listened to the voices that come from deep inside them and transcribed those fleeting feelings into songs about pure emotions, (Feels, if you will) leaving the listener either pulled deeper and deeper into the odd soundscape being made for them, or into a colorful state of confusion. True, they are not for everyone’s tastes, but I do feel that if given a fair chance, anyone could potentially get into at least a couple of their infectious songs.

Some songs do seem to drawl on and on, such as the opener, “Jimmy Raven”, but I suggest never giving in to the temptation to skip a song. Like I said, Animal Collective has always been about building energies and combating emotions, which means the songs are all about the whole experience. This is especially true when listening to Animal Collective as a live album, any themes that they might seem to randomly touch on early on are usually built upon later in some way. Animal Collective try to break the modern musical addiction that is short bursts of song-i-tude, to remind us of the roots of what music actually is. Music is about the unique experience of hearing someone’s individual thoughts and feelings, from their perspective, to expand your own. Some may think that by getting rid of obvious hooks and choruses that Animal Collective is barely even making music, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. In all honesty, they might be one of the only bands to actually make music anymore. They are able to weave a song from apparently thin air, and their seemingly random vocal cries are placed so particularly that they seem to come bubbling from the mouths of the members, but from the brains of some other-worldly force. I actually find many parallels between the song structures of Animal Collective and the works of early classical composers whose epic suites were a living-breathing piece as much as Animal Collectives are. They evolved, rose and fall mimicking the rising and falling of human emotions, and they took time to build up those feelings.

Animal Crack Box is one of those true experiences. It can get one thinking of many things, reminding us of stories from days of old or of the challenges we will have to face in the future. It’s full of hidden sounds, subliminal messages, random samples, bizarre yelps and strange chord progressions. It’s an overwhelming experience, but in a beautiful way. It shows us what music can be at it’s most basic state of being, and at the same time, it’s most complex. It’s not what one would expect after the releases of Strawberry Jam and Merriweather Post Pavilion, but it is a fantastic showcasing for fans, both new and old, what lies at the true core of the band that’s been everywhere.

Rating: 8.8/10

FIND AND BUY ON EBAY: http://shop.ebay.com/i.html?_nkw=animal+crack+box

Key Songs:
Iko Ovo

Jungle Heart

Pumpkin Gets a Snakebite
Pumpkin’s Hallucination
Pumpkin’s Funeral

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