Responsible for one of the most critically-feted, argued about, scrutinized and seismic album of 2009 — Merriweather Post Pavilion — Animal Collective are not ones to remain still for long, even when they are perched at the top. They toured unceasingly and yet somehow found time to release a massive three LP box set of archival material, complete an experimental film and soundtrack (for release next year), and sneak back into the studio for a new EP.
AC fans expecting odds and ends from MPP and its booming, shimmering, bright pop will be both tricked and treated with Fall Be Kind. For one, there's the much-discussed, first legally licensed Grateful Dead sample powering "What Would I Want? Sky," a shuffling, gently loping, woozy number unlike anything in the band's oeuvre. From there, the band spins out in new directions. There's the weightless acapella number "Bleed" that casts their sublime harmonies in a new (outer) space while "I Think I Can" grows dense with vocal fireworks. The band also puts to tape a live staple, "From a Highway," a slow crest of a song that takes its time reaching its destination, regardless that it's the middle of nowhere.