BY: JABRIL POWER
progress@eku.edu

When you hear the words, “strawberry jam,” you probably think one of two things: a delicious red strawberry preserve, usually sealed in a jar or can often to be eaten later with your breakfast bread of choice. Or you may think of the name of a critically acclaimed studio album by the psychedelic rock group Animal Collective.

Either way, the two things have something in common, and if you haven’t been fortunate enough to experience it, you’re in for a real treat.

While strawberry jam is a great food item, Animal Collective is something even more surprising and wonderful.

Strawberry Jam is just one of the many albums by Animal Collective. Featuring strange, dark, distorted sounds and singing that sounds almost folk-like in essence.

Although on your first listen through you may not grasp all of the song’s concepts, they still seem vaguely positive due to the high pitches and upbeat rhythms.

Merriweather Post Pavilion, another album by Animal Collective, is best described as some sort of psychedelic trip, or even hypnotic trance music.

Many would probably label it “hippy” music, but that can definitely be looked at as a good thing because it seems to be pretty peaceful and revolutionary in its own regard.

Songs on the album, like “My Girls,” really stand out from anything that we’ve heard in music in quite some time.

Also the standout track “Guys Eyes” sounds like something that will be appreciated for years to come with its overlapping vocals, high-pitched repetitive harmonies and all around psychedelic momentum building sounds deep fried in the emotions and great writing that is, Animal Collective.

The band members of the group aren’t afraid to let their emotional, sometimes off-key, trance-like voices consume the song and transform it into a memorable journey.

They also aren’t strangers to the idea of letting the music and instruments do the talking.

You might catch yourself just listening to an instrumental that paints the visuals of falling down an endless tunnel of beautiful colors and sounds. The band presents this as an almost out-of-body experience that is truly enjoyable.

I wouldn’t say that Animal Collective is for everyone, but it definitely is for someone who is looking for something they’ve never heard before; something that really plays behind its own rules.

The group, to me, is a trendsetter. Their music is very much like a kaleidoscope in its abstractness.

I personally really enjoy the direction that they’ve taken and with 10 albums out and the group’s activity dating back to 1999. There’s going to be something on one of the albums you’re bound to enjoy and appreciate, at least for their musical bravery.

I mean, who do you know that doesn’t like strawberry jam?

You can check out more information about Animal Collective on Spotify or iTunes today.