Uptonian Thoughts

The Year in Music — Number Ten: Merriweather Post Pavillion by Animal Collective

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Merriweather Post Pavillion by Animal Collective

My Girls is an incredible song. You should stop reading this review and go watch the video right now. Make sure it’s in HD.

Animal Collective is less of a band and more of a, well, collective. The lineup shifts regularly, and every album is a new adventure. Merriweather Post Pavillion is, however, the group’s crowning achievement. Their eighth studio album contains some of the most accessible and focused songs they have written, but still maintains that familiar (if “familiar” is even a term that can be used to describe their sound) neo-psychedelic pop rock that we have come to love over the past few years.

The airy intro of In the Flowers gives way to hand claps and bouncy beats and serves as the perfect intro to the aforementioned My Girls. Every song on the album has a distinct feel to it yet still manages to sound just like an Animal Collective album should. It’s interesting that I would be reviewing this album now, almost exactly one year since I first listened to it. Its uplifting melodies and beats stand in stark contrast to the dark and cold nights that I associate with listening to the album. This is a summer album, through and through. It should be listened to in a car with no top or while lying on a blanket in a green field. Case in point: Summertime Clothes. I dare you not to start bopping your head to this song.

Towards the end of the album, we are all invited to slow down on the track No More Runnin. This easy-going lullaby quickly gives way to one of the quirkiest and poppiest tracks on the album. Closer Brother Sport will have you humming the melody for days and even weeks after the song has stopped playing.

Merriweather is some of Animal Collective’s best produced and most cohesive work to date, and all that extra effort definitely pays off. Just be careful that you don’t spend too long staring at that mesmerizing album art.