Release Date: Mar 20, 2007
Record label: Paw Tracks
Genre(s): Indie, Rock
Review Summary: Fans of Animal Collective rejoice! The collective's drummer/sound maker's new CD is a treat for the ears, combining warped Beach Boys pop with lush effects and beautiful melodies.Noah “Panda Bear” Lennox had a whole lot of stuff on his plate during the writing, recording and releasing of his second solo outing, Person Pitch. He got married and had a kid and packed up his life and moved to Lisbon, Portugal. It’s hard to believe anyone in that situation would have the time to create such an inspired album, but Panda manages to knock it out of the park.
The radical evolution of Noah Lennox aka Panda Bear's sound over the course of his solo catalog is inextricable from the concordant developments happening with his collaborations in Animal Collective. Both entities shifted gears quickly from album to album, but the wildly different places Lennox would take his experiments truly found a voice of their own with Person Pitch, his 2007 quilt work of samples, textures, and unprecedented explorations of joy and sorrow. The same jittery campfire folk-psych that Animal Collective perfected on 2004's Sung Tongs spilled over onto Panda Bear's cloudy acoustic ruminations on his solo album Young Prayer, released later that same year.
Imagine Brian Wilson drinking deep from a golden goblet of hallucinogens, plugging in a laptop and making an album of warm, layered vocals, looped hums, and supple, found sounds. The second solo album by Panda Bear - aka Noah Lennox, singer and drummer for the band Animal Collective - is just such a heavenly thing, shaping psychedelic pop into blissful electronic shapes, more concerned with moods and textures than verses and choruses. As lyrics about good times and glowing souls emerge from an ocean of noise, ghosts are gently teased out of the machines: Comfy in Nautica summons up Christmas carols, Bros channels gospel and Im Not recalls Brian Eno's ambient experiments.
In his recent conversation with Dusted's own Rob Hatch-Miller, Noah Lennox (a.k.a. Panda Bear) broke down his new album as "96 percent samples, 10 percent of which I actually played." That said, the material Lennox has plundered for Person Pitch has been doused in so much FX that they’re rendered translucent. A lengthy list typed on the sleeve identifies possible sources as diverse as Hall & Oates, Luomo, Spacemen 3 and Gang Starr.