January 5, 2009

Let the sycophancy begin!

First day back and already the web is ringing with the praises of Animal Collective and their Merriweather Post Pavilion LP. Pitchfork gives AC their usual heap of (deserved) adoration. In Mark Richardson's review he demonstrates critical skill he must have developed in his undergrad degree in English: "The lyrics focus on the body, basic human connection, the need to take care of oneself, the puzzle of existence." So far, it sounds like this could be the flipside of a TV on the Radio review. "It's of the moment and feels new, but it's also striking in its immediacy and comes across as friendly and welcoming." That about does it. Next to TV on the Radio, AC has claimed the pristine pedistal of unreserved critical adoration and an enigmatic "nowness." Tinymixtapes seems to agree. And stereogum is already begging the question: the best album of 2009? All this fanfare was to be expected, but the last time I checked, AC were worth a shit because they refused to take themselves too seriously. So I guess I'm slightly put off by all the over-the-top praise. They've drummed up high expectations before, but this has surely been one of the most anticipated albums by anyone in years, not least for the "magic-eye" album cover.

Well, I'm saving myself for the official release (tomorrow, on vinyl), even though there's been a leak available for weeks now. Until then, the jury is out because I say it's out. My prediction is that in six months everyone will be afraid to say how much they love the new Animal Collective album; whereas now everyone will be afraid to disagree with the statement that Merriweather Post Pavilion is the "running commentary on the essential mystery of being alive."

In other exciting news, cokemachineglow has posted their annual "fantasy covers podcast" which I have yet to download.

Now I'm off to an important confidential meeting.

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