For more than a decade, Animal Collective, or AnCo, as fans call them, are known for stretching the boundaries of traditional rock and creating experimental psychedelic tracks. Their love and deep enthrallment for electronic music is untamed, so each and every new release signed by them includes synths and samples of electronic beats. Monkey Been To Burn Town makes no exception to this unwritten rule, as the group’s new release, out today, May 28, 2013, is peppered with guest remixes and electronic influences.
It’s a colorful four-track remix EP, a special extended play of devoted re-edits, re-fixes and other twisted re-workings of two album tracks: “Monkey Riches” and “New Town Burnout“. Avey Tare (David Portner), Panda Bear (Noah Lennox), Deakin (Josh Dibb) and Geologist (Brian Weitz) re-designed the sounds of these two tracks with the help of experimental pop artists Brian DeGraw of Gang Gang Dance, the duo Teen Girl Fantasy and of famed Chicago footwork forefather Traxman and Shabazz Palaces. Their joined talent created a tornado of sounds and beats on the analog-adventure “Monkey Riches” and “New Town Burnout”.
Gang Gang Dance’s Brian DeGraw takes “Monkey Riches” and stuffs it with his cyber-tribal constructions and his delicious beats that complete the long equation, made of funky synth rhythms and willowy, relaxed bass lines. The result is breathtaking: a remarkable escalating dancefloor banger. Moreover, Traxman gives his personal twisted touch to this track and the effect is inescapable for those who listen to the track at least once. There’s no more coziness, no more fluffy beats to create a euphoric state of mind, only the harsh and dark vibe of the Chicago underground.
Shabazz metamorphoses “New Town Burnout“, which was originally included on 2012’s Centipede HZ, into a harum-scarum rollicking bass booming psychedelic anthem that simply bursts on a confusing and easily ominous universe. The beats simply mess up with every grey cell in your brain, and though the tracks are ear candy for the fans, after six minutes of intense quivering, your head will be up in the sky, dancing on clouds and dreaming of your own utopic zenith. Ishmael Butler from Shabazz Palaces whispers his mantra, “Out of my body, out of my mind”, epitomizing the effect Animal Collective’s music has over the human brain especially when the sounds are enliven by the shivered sci-fi score of Shabazz’s Tendai Maraire. In other words, Shabazz Palaces take the track’s core and turns it into an experimental hip-hop outcome, a monster version of what “New Town Burnout” used to be when Panda Bear produced it at the tail end of his Tomboy recording process.
Therefore, these guys from Baltimore and their guests prove that two tracks pulled from the same album can be the spur for boundless artistry. Monkey Been To Burn Town is filled with psych-pop barnburners that take their listener to an unforeseen musical astral-projection. If you love Daft Punk and obviously, AnCo, it’s impossible not to love this new EP.