Noah Benjamin Lennox AKA Panda Bear returns to form with Panda Bear Meets The Grim Reaper. In 2007 his album Person Pitch was considered by Pitchfork (the internet's favourite music reviewer) as the album of the year. And quite right too, but can he do it again?

Panda Bear Meets the Grim Reaper

Release Date: 12th January
Domino Records

“When Panda Bear met the Grim Reaper, they jammed”

Panda Bear is the animal name of Noah Lennox, one-fourth of Animal Collective—an essentially experimental electronic band who made waves among fans of alternative music with their 2009 album Merriweather Post Pavilion. Person Pitch, the third album released by Panda Bear, was named by influential music blog Pitchfork as their album of the year in 2007. A much more mellow Tomboy followed but didn’t quite live up to the expectations of the critics, but will his fifth measure up?

PBVSGR is like being taken through the depths of space as depicted in a 1960s psychedelic cartoon, with only a folk choir for company. Its occasional repetitiveness is forgiven as one becomes absorbed in kitsch electronic noises held together by the beautiful harmony of the vocals. Although this might sound chaotic, but the album stays completely in control of itself, The overall effect is a soundscape of which Brian Eno and Wayne Coyne (The Flaming Lips) would be jealous. It is a mighty return to form, having abandoned the minimal, airy sounds of Tomboy. To use Noah’s term, his “soup” is concoction of disparate influences and production techniques which all layer upon each other to create divine textures.

On his meeting with the Grim Reaper Panda Bear explains:

“Some of the songs address a big change, or a big transformation... Meeting the Grim Reaper in that context I liked a whole lot... It’s sort of marking change — not necessarily an absolute death, but the ending of something, and hopefully the beginning of something else.”

And we believe that if one is going to meet the Grim Reaper then this indeed should be the listened to on the journey there, or indeed back.

Key tracks: “Mr. Noah”, “Come to Your Senses”, “Tropic of Cancer

Like this? You may also like: Brian Eno, The Flaming Lips, Animal Collective

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Read more articles by Mandi Goodier here

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