Animal Collective

Fat Cat
Reviewed by: Mike Powell
Reviewed on: 2005-10-17

Posted 10/17/2005 - 08:07:52 AM by KlausFraktal:
 Enough with this predictable mainstream crap! I heard there was a Slovakian mouse farmer selling spoken word recordings of his consumption-stricken half-uncle reading the Canterbury Tales over an untuned glockenspiel. There's your album of the week!
Posted 10/17/2005 - 11:03:04 AM by florenz6:
 Predictable mainstream?? Mr. Fractal, please! Now, here is some mainstream bordedom: Franz Ferdinand, Rolling Stones, Robbie Williams! Mainstream sells! Animal Collective will never be part of a mainstream culture - it´s just too surprising and oblique. But, maybe, you just made a little joke:)
Posted 10/17/2005 - 11:30:40 AM by quizzical:
 Why is it that I really like the first 2 songs but not the rest?
Posted 10/17/2005 - 11:44:42 AM by citycalmdown:
 I'd like Whole Review Honesty, actually. Please man, tone down on the PF-style metaphor and analogy, and other such nonsensical tangents. Good writing can be straight-forward, yet remain evocative and clearly stated. Anyway, thumbs up for recognizing Feels’ brilliance.
Posted 10/17/2005 - 01:25:26 PM by ckramer:
 you're a tough grader, especially when compared to the rest of the reviewers on this staff (not a complaint i enjoy your reviews), i predict lots of "best of the year"s being thrown on this record. i really really like it.
Posted 10/17/2005 - 01:28:19 PM by idunnowhy:
 too bad this album sounds like dung, because I was really counting on Animal Collective to be great. Why'd they go with a super-streamlined, incredibly synthetic production on Feels? It really just makes everything they do really annoying. Grass would have been a great song, if there had been a tad more soul behind the mixing board
Posted 10/17/2005 - 01:42:17 PM by keyinblack:
 iduunowhy, tell me the concept of the soul and explain how Animal Collective don't have it in this release? I'm a huge fan, and although this isn't my favourite (yet) it's most definitely their best. I'd call Sung Tongs more annoying than this as far as meandering running-out-of-ideas that destroys the last half of the album.
Posted 10/17/2005 - 01:45:54 PM by revolvingatom:
 Along with their fellow New Yorkers The Books, Animal Collective are creating some of the most astonishing "experimental pop" albums at the moment. As someone who has followed Animal Collective since their initial stirrings, I find myself thrilled with their evolution. With "Feels" they have streamlined and focused their sound while retaining the haphazard unpredictability that made them so appealing to begin with. Although this certainly feels like their masterpiece, it may turn out to be just another remarkable detour on their brilliant journey.
Posted 10/17/2005 - 02:25:00 PM by idunnowhy:
 key, i agree that sung tongs only had about 20 minutes of good ideas, but at least it sounded organically lush throughout. On feels, the guitars just sound plastic... but maybe i'll give it a 3rd or 4th listen and be converted
Posted 10/17/2005 - 05:43:20 PM by florenz6:
 Hi, revolvingatom, you said it in wonderful words! And you do well to mention this absolutely terrific 2005 album, LOST AND SAFE from THE BOOKS. I gave a copy of it to Brian Eno after an interview , and he was totally thrilled by it. It is a quite ridiculous tendency to call things "commercial" that have a tendency to transparent forms/melodic structures/a lack of too noisy elements. In fact, "Lost and Safe" is such an overwhelming listening experience that it may be recommendded to anyone who loves great melodies AND experiments. Eno´s "Another Day On Earth" belongs in this rare 2005 category (of beauty and depth) as well as the forthcominmg album from "Vanishing Breed".
Posted 10/18/2005 - 12:21:10 AM by citycalmdown:
 florenz6, you’ve heard The Books’ previous albums, right? They’re about 10x better than Lost & Safe, though L&S; is still superb. Just making sure!
Posted 10/18/2005 - 03:21:25 AM by florenz6:
 Hey, citycalmdown, please calm down! I know all three BOOKS-albums, and I don´t agree with your opinion. The first one is a brave move into their territory, but the second and third one are their masterpieces (in my opinion)!
Posted 10/18/2005 - 01:16:29 PM by ckramer:
 ...but this record, the one that was reviewed, by the animal collective is better than any of the books records...
Posted 10/18/2005 - 03:18:04 PM by bendsinister:
 absolutely. i am a bit confused by the comparison, myself. But both great bands. Oh Feels! let me count the ways which you please me!! Would thy were my lover, but I shall settle for you as a simple rose upon my cheek! P.S. Avey Tare can email me anytime about a possible tryst. mmm... my little tare bear...
Posted 10/18/2005 - 04:35:02 PM by florenz6:
 Absolutely? nothing is absolutely true - the land of opinions and arguments, okay, buddies?! 1o times better, this or that, that sems a bit childish. We just should be happy that there is such great music around (The Books, Animal Collective, Vanishing Breed, Flanger, Brian Eno, Jon Balke/Batagraf; Antony and the Johnsons, Nine Horses; Kammerflimmer Kollektief). So no one has to make sure anything, personal preferences rely on own´s own history of listening: we don´t need to be hip, we don´t need to be trend-setters; we just want to be touched deeply/really surprised/led to new perceptions! That´s it. No kidding around. No offense intended. All the records of my small list of 5-star-albums reveal new details with every listening. Simple as that!
Posted 10/18/2005 - 07:34:51 PM by bendsinister:
 oh, friend, i do love you. not as much as i love Avey Tare though!! what pecks, what upper arm strength!!
Posted 10/25/2005 - 12:52:22 PM by jhitting:
 When will Stylus stop sniffing the ass of Pitchfork and review something before them? I am constantly coming over here and reading reviews of albums that Pitchfork reviewed days prior. Get off your ass're better than that. Oh...and this album's cover art is better than the content. Sung Tongs was much better/folkier and it didn't try to reinvent the band's sound.
Posted 10/25/2005 - 06:08:19 PM by revolvingatom:
 Hello Florenz6. Thanks for the compliment. I am intrigued by this band "Vaninshing Breed". I heard some sound clips on their website. When will the album be available? Also I was hoping to begin a private corespondence with you. I think we should talk more.
Posted 10/26/2005 - 03:10:28 AM by keyinblack:
 Um, jhitting, Stylus published this last Monday (10/17), Pitchfork published their's on Tuesday (10/18.) And obviously you haven't heard much Animal Collective outside Sung Tongs; they change their sound just about every release (ever hear "Here Comes the Indian or Spirit They're Gone, Spirit They've Vanished?) Their next will most likely sound different from this.
Posted 10/26/2005 - 10:00:15 AM by raskolnikov:
 Revolving Atom and Florenz6 are seriously afflicted with some sort of hyperbolic disorder, gifts given to Brian Eno after interviews notwithstanding. In the typical fashion of the UK music fan you now anoint Animal Collective the best band ever for the next 13 minutes and 31 seconds; don't you ever get tired of such silly behavior? Can you even listen to music without qualifications or influence checks? This band has never been more than a slightly interesting pop band, and their list of influences (Black Dice meets the Beach Boys, poppy goodness hidden under scabby noises) reads better than it sounds within their musical context. Sung Tongs was a totally overrated release. Quizzical and Idunnowhy have this band properly figured out--great albums are great all the way through and don't litter the back end with filler. This album fits in nicely with the Animal Collective's other stuff--it's really not that substantial, and the most interesting aspect of the music is the tangential textural material. For me this band has continued in its tradition of putting out half of a good record with this release. They are also pretty shabby as a live act. I have seen them twice and have been underwhelmed both times. and while we're at it, who was responsible for the adulation tossed at Antony and the Johnsons in the UK? such unbelievable pretension, such mawkish sentimentality, such simplistic music...what a joke that this band has gained such favor in your island nation. I thought that the English had higher standards than that, or weren't so easily fooled....
Posted 10/26/2005 - 08:13:42 PM by revolvingatom:
 Raskolnikov - Despite having a very cool screen name, I must say you are a bit off base with your own brand of hyperbolic spewing. I personally do not recall saying that Animal Collective are the "best band ever", or even suggesting that. Nor did I ever mention any of their influences. I was merely stating that they are what I would consider to be one the most vital and creative bands out there right now, which, I would think, you would find hard to disagree with since you have heard all of their albums and seen them live twice. Even if you think they only make half-good albums, that half is obviously good enough to keep you coming back for more. Oh, and by the way I am from New York, not the UK.
Posted 10/28/2005 - 01:57:32 PM by jhitting:
 Are you sure? I thought for damn sure I'd seen the other review several days prior. Oh well, my bad. Sorry Stylus...I love you.
Posted 10/28/2005 - 06:03:04 PM by bassman08:
 "...a Slovakian mouse farmer selling spoken word recordings of his consumption-stricken half-uncle reading the Canterbury Tales over an untuned glockenspiel." Holy shit, that would be the coolest thing ever! As for AC, I just purchased it not an hour ago, so I have yet to listen, but I have high hopes.
Posted 11/08/2005 - 02:57:46 AM by martin:
 Banshee Beat is THE standout track - next síngle?