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Panda Bear -- Mr Noah
by Sara Munjack on November 8, 2014
As per usual, Panda Bear comes through with a surprise new EP that is psychedelic as ever. Set up your slow-moving strobe light lasers and bob your head to the highly rhythmic four-track Mr Noah. The short EP is a taster for his anticipated album Panda Bear Meets the Grim Reaper, which drops January 13.
Sit down and get lost in the oriental-flavored "Untying The Knot." The track begins with an Asian flair that transitions into chanting vocals paired with a heavy bass-drum beat that transports you to another plane. The song eases into "This Side of Paradise" which features soft coos and "oooh"s set to a funky collection of sounds that make your spine tingle, all at a moderate tempo.
Mr Noah is a calculated mess that leans further toward the Animal Collective side of his sound then he ever has before. Each recording is layered so perfectly; each instrument tightly out of sync. Each track contains the perfect amount of background fuzz, which ensconces the listener in a floaty dynamo of drums and bass upon listen. The EP is perfectly trance-like.
The opening track "Mr Noah" highlights a catchy vocal string of "ay ay ay ay"s that provide a sonic punch. Lennox's spooky voice cuts through the mix slightly off-balance, but purposefully so. I found myself humming the hook to myself for hours after the first listen. This song is for sure the one to stick--the one to define Panda Bear's newest sound. The texture is as fresh and surprising as the EP's appearance. "Mr Noah" eases into "Faces in the Crowd," which is a sonic experience in itself. There are heavy influences of 80s pop mixed with modern experimental hypnobeat. The tune is a cyclical mesh of mesmerizing flavors.
Although the album focalizes on a messy sound, the EP is much more produced than Panda Bear has ever sounded before. Each track is so saturated and less sample-reliant than Panda Bear has been in the past. The EP is said to be very indicative of the LP surfacing in January, so get used to the roar of this loud, noisy new Panda Bear.