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Strawberry Jam

Strawberry Jam

9 Sep 2007
4.6 out of 5 stars 13 customer reviews

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
Animal Collective have struck gold once again with their latest release, "Strawberry Jam". They are one of the few bands around who have a fresh approach with each album whilst retaining elements that made them so distinctive in the first place.

Some reviews for this album have mentioned that "Strawberry Jam" is their most accessible release so far but to be honest it's more abrasive and frantic than their previous album "Feels" which was dreamy and relaxed by comparison.

"Cuckoo Cuckoo" for example starts off slow and haunting before exploding into a chaotic burst of wild noise and intense vocals. "For Reverend Green" has short bursts of screaming too and the guitars sound pretty menacing and distorted.

What is more accessible, I suppose, is the tracks have a more traditional composition in that there are distinctive verse and chorus parts to the songs. Some of their previous work favoured longer more abstract structures that slowly unravelled and changed.

Animal Collective greatest strength is their ability to combine very strong melodies with experimental elements. "Peacebone" for example starts with a bizarre electronic noise that somehow merges itself into the guitar and drums (the video is fantastic by the way). "For Reverend Green" is intense but has some really melodic backing vocals (it's also my favourite track). "Fireworks" is playful and contains some catchy vocals, heavily treated guitar and melodic piano parts.

"Chores" and "Derek" appear to be sung by Panda Bear and the latter track certainly resembles something from "Person Pitch" which he released earlier this year. These tracks are light hearted and upbeat although still retaining the group's slightly odd approach to music.
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It's true, I did wake up this morning full of an ageing mans' woes. As a remedial measure, I decided to listen to my new arrival, 'Strawberry Jam". It was the right thing to do...AC have a rare talent, they make me smile, not so much with amusement, but with pleasure. Pascal Comelade has the same affect on me, as do 'The Fiery Furnaces", and it is perhaps no surprise that I find resonances of both musicians in Animal Collective. The music is complex, clever and inventive, often sounding like the strangest fairground sideshow underpinned by a Philip Glass foundation. I'm also tempted to say 'Band of Holy Joy' meets 'Eyeless in Gaza', or 'Clap your Hands, Say Yeah' meets 'Steve Reich', but those kind of comparisons are very subjective, and I don't wish to paint AC critically speaking into a corner at a time when their freshness and exuberance serve them so well.
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By Arcade on 16 April 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I simply have to pass my own opinion of this record, it is truly fantastic. As it has been said many times, AC's work is somewhat divisive, some of my friends love it but some just don't get it - put off by the occasional screams, the dripping sounds and the traffic noises, too surreal and new for their boring, mainstream, conventional tastes. Animal Collective's work is so organic, so imaginative, that it conjures up sublime psychedelic pop unlike anything you will have ever heard of before. It's very difficult being an Animal Collective fan because you tell people and they just have no clue who they are - people prefer instant gratification in the likes of Travis or The Killers, while with Animal Collective it may take a few listens to really 'get' it - but believe me, it is so worth it - you will be justly rewarded. 'Peacebone', 'Unsolved Mysteries' and 'Winter Wonderland' are three of my favourites, while 'Derek' is just so incredibly catchy, I never though a lighthearted song about a childhood pet could turn out to be so brilliant. The double of 'For Reverend Green' and 'Fireworks' is the best work they had ever done (until their latest album). These guys will never support a Coldplay gig, but maybe that's a good thing.

This album may change your life and by simply listening to it you will have joined a select group of people with the willingness to try new things. Give it a few listens, and if you haven't done so already, buy Merriweather Post Pavilion, their later album as it is like this but on another level.
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Format: Audio CD
This is great! It's like a really hectic, psychedelic mixture of They Might Be Giants, The Beach Boys, The Beta band and loads of other great stuff all mixed up with weird dinosaur and traffic noise thrown in for good measure. This is my favourite of their albums so far and I'd argue it's the most accessible but still potentially off-putting for the unintitiated - Stick with it as there are some gorgeous melodies buried under all that clutter.
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Format: Audio CD
I saw Animal Collective in Summer 2007, after falling in love with such an original and mesmerising sound and was blown away by their live performance. Little did I know that what we heard that evening was to become Strawberry Jam a few months later, and what an exciting arrangement of music it is. Throwing noises and rhythmic sounds with a subtle electronic upbeat style AC have done it again, creating in my opinion one of the best albums of last year.
You just have to hear the opening of Peacebone to understand what I mean. Overall a completely otherworldly sensual experience with the highlights of Reverend Green, Fireworks and of course the magnificent Peacebone. If you enjoy the wave of new experimental audio or are looking for something completely different, ceck out Animal Collective and Strawberry Jam.
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