Merriweather's sound plays like both a summation and an expansion of everything Animal Collective has done so far, with a sharper focus on melody and more emboldened vocals that drive the songs.
MPP is a dense studio record with a prominent synthetic pulse, but AC does not jettison warmth by leaning ‘lectronic, instead defying the sterility associated with its own techniques.
The boys of Animal Collective have mapped out some previously uncharted waters, producing a style of music that could belong to no one else; a distinctive, flawless fusion of the semi- automated and the wholly organic.
Soulful and almost structurally flawless, Merriweather finds one of the most talented, most creative pop bands finally and gloriously figuring it all out.
What they've constructed here is a new kind of electronic pop-- one which is machine-generated and revels in technology but is also deeply human, never drawing too much attention to its digital nature.
While calling Merriweather a mature album may sound terribly condescending, as though past efforts were primarily driven by impetuous recklessness and a general lack of self-awareness, this is the first time that the band has fully realized the power of restraint.
It cleaves closer to Pitch’s more listener-friendly aesthetic, abandoning the self-indulgent impulses that sometimes muddied last year’s Strawberry Jam for an album full of effervescent, transportive oddity.
Is Merriweather Post Pavilion the flawless album that it's been willed to be? Taken as a whole I'd say it's pretty damn close.
On Merriweather, their art reminds us that immersion in Western tropes need not be met with scorn, that not all of its idioms have yet been exhausted, that embracing optimism and melody can still be so relevant -- and it aches in the most soulful of ways.
Oozing fun out of every pore, this record is the perfect tonic to the increasingly troubled times that 2009 brings with it and will most likely feature on many of those Best Of lists come December.
Like the best experimental rockers surging toward nirvana ... Animal Collective have not only created a private soundworld like none other, they've also made it an inviting place to visit.
This is a band at the heights of its powers, fully in command of its sound and its creative process, unafraid to try basically anything.
This record delivers on so many different levels, and lives up to, and some would say even exceeds, the lofty and often preposterous expectations of the blogosphere.
Their seventh LP once again proves that Animal Collective are as musically divergent as they are prolific.
‘Merriweather Post Pavilion’ is a crate-digging, blog-reading, lost treasure-unearthing music nerd’s world of influences distilled into something that anyone, people who don’t even know what a blog is, can get immediately, and keep on getting at different levels.
A rich, multi-layered amalgamation of the band's past, Merriweather Post Pavilion captures the cascading feints of their less-celebrated roots and cloys them together with Strawberry Jam's pyrotechnic showers, producing an instantaneous and exhilarating imprint of Animal Collective in the here and now.
This is definitely an album designed for the iPod generation, recorded with repeated headphone listening rather than stadium rocking in mind.
|# 3 -||A.V. Club|
|# 7 -||Amazon|
|# 1 -||Consequence of Sound|
|# 7 -||Drowned in Sound|
|# 1 -||MOJO|
|# 1 -||musicOMH|
|# 5 -||NME|
|# 1 -||No Ripcord|
|# 2 -||NPR|
|# 2 -||Paste|
|# 1 -||Pitchfork|
|# 1 -||PopMatters|
|# 1 -||Pretty Much Amazing|
|# 4 -||Q Magazine|
|# 14 -||Rolling Stone|
|# 1 -||Spin|
|# 1 -||Stereogum|
|# 1 -||Tiny Mix Tapes|
|# 1 -||Uncut|
|# 1 -||AoTY 2009|
|# 13 -||Consequence of Sound (2000s)|
|# 416 -||NME Top 500 of All Time|
|# 14 -||Pitchfork (2000s)|
|# 8 -||Pitchfork: The People's List|
|# 114 -||Spin (1985-2009)|
|# 139 -||SPIN (1985-2014)|