Over two decades have passed since Animal Collective accidentally began to reimagine the sound and image of what’s easiest here to call indie rock. From the start, they turned the ultimately rare trick of tucking inscrutable experiments into songs so infectious they became generational standards, empowering a new permissibility within a sometimes-stodgy scene. They helped make the world safe for The Grateful Dead and tie-dye, or indie rock open to the Gamelan and Juju. Influences, they implicitly insisted, matter less than the music and spirit they inspire. Such paradigm-bending lessons are now simply part of the paradigm, philosophical cornerstones of modern music. But Animal Collective have never sat still, even on the cornerstones they helped create.


“In 2020, like everyone else, I was just a private person,” says Hval. “No artists were allowed to perform. I was reduced to ‘just me.’” As a result, Hval questioned what “just me” could mean. As an exercise, Hval wrote straight-forward stories about life, investigating the stripped-down “just me” concept. When Hval started writing stories that eventually became this record, the pandemic hit and she remembered specific times in her life that felt completely stripped of value; like when a celiac diagnosis halted the start of her music career. Hval elaborates: “This made me want to write simple stories. My problem was that I found that the music component in the writing process made the words stray from their path and even jump into the absurd. I think it is just bound to happen when there is music involved. After all, a song isn’t just words, it has a melody, and the reason we have melodies is to step into the dark and jump off cliffs.”


Marina Herlop sheds the classical trappings of her accomplished previous albums Nanook and Babasha to emerge in vibrant, polymorphous form on her hypnotizing new album Pripyat, out May 20, 2022 via PAN. With Pripyat the Catalonian, conservatory trained composer, vocalist, and pianist channels her environment in truly posthuman form; Herlop performs alien vocal acrobatics, drawing inspiration from Carnatic music of Southern India, while planting a diversity of sonic seeds which blossom brilliantly in her sumptuous garden of chimeric compositions, produced for the first time exclusively electronically. Herlop blew the audience away with her ensemble’s Rewire debut this April and will be performing at Primavera Barcelona and LA, CTM, Mutek, Dekmantel and Le Guess Who? amongst other notable upcoming events worldwide in 2022, with more exciting news soon to be shared.

P4K: Animal Collective / Jenny Hval / Marina Herlop

11 Nov 2022

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