Centipede Hz (CD)


Animal Collective

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Amoeba Review

09/04/2012

After the no-doubt exhausting experience of creating the band’s masterpiece, 2009’s Merriweather Post Pavillion, Animal Collective have taken the logical next step, which is to not dive in headfirst right away, but rather release a comedown EP (Fall Be Kind), focus on side projects (Panda Bear, 2010’s “visual album” ODDSAC) before heading back for the official follow-up. With returning member Deakin, who had been absent from the band since 2007, Centipede Hz sounds like a band refinding its experimental roots after moving toward the ambient pop extreme of its sound scale, before “My Girls,” instead sounding like the Animal Collective of Strawberry Jam and even earlier albums like Campfire Songs — but with the professionalism learned from years of recording and touring. Its first three tracks are joyful, classic Animal Collective, showcasing the pretty distinguishable vocal stylings of Panda Bear and Avey Tare, in particular. “Moonjock” is full of stop-start-stutter sound, swirling radio and other noise around watery pop vocals. “Today’s Supernatural” sounds a bit like Panda Bear’s most recent album, Tomboy, with its near-danceable beat and looping electronic, but its heartfelt lead vocal tears through in a way that the headier Panda Bear material rarely does. “Rosie Oh” is a clear highlight for any fan of the band’s Beach Boys-inspired vocal harmonies, though here, among mechanical guitar lines and electro-squelches, they sound more like something from a doo-wop musical about a mad scientist. Some of Centipede Hz’s songs get lost in a mired stew of sound collage they had recently surpassed, but even still, the album succeeds in creating its own world, something Animal Collective has done on each of its greatest albums. Traipsing through the alien sounds of the resplendent “Wide Eyed” or discovering a Peter Gabriel-style ballad in the album’s center (“Father Time”) is part of the fun of digging into an album like Centipede Hz, and though it isn’t as immediately accessible as some of their work, repeat listens reward further. They still create sounds most couldn’t dream of.



Track Listing



Side 1 Titles
Artist
Length
1.
Moonjock
Animal Collective 05:05
2.
Today's Supernatural
Animal Collective 04:15
3.
Rosie Oh
Animal Collective 02:55
4.
Applesauce
Animal Collective 05:35
5.
Wide Eyed
Animal Collective 05:00
6.
Father Time
Animal Collective 04:34
7.
New Town Burnout
Animal Collective 06:02
8.
Monkey Riches
Animal Collective 06:46
9.
Mercury Man
Animal Collective 04:19
10.
Pulleys
Animal Collective 03:30
11.
Amanita
Animal Collective 05:36

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