Animal Collective - Strawberry Jam
NME.COM feature on Animal Collective - Strawberry Jam album including album review, artwork, tracks, listen now, tour dates, discography and more.
Release date: 10 September 2007
In a world where artists write songs about America called ‘America’, Animal Collective are a cause for celebration. This is the Baltimore pop experimentalists’ eighth album and it’s as idiosyncratic and tinged with goofiness as one might expect for a band with members called Panda Bear and Geologist. Accurately defining AC’s sound would require a Texas-sized sheet of paper, but at any...
- Sep 13, 2007
Tracklisting click track to read more
A gleeful mess of strangled electro
- Aug 24, 2012
A confusing but likeable jumble
- Jun 22, 2012
Baltimore oddballs hit the spot
- May 16, 2012
'Monkey Been To Burn Town' will be released on May 27
The one-day festival will take place on May 25 next year in London's Victoria Park
The band's new album is set for release on September 3
Animal Collective - Strawberry Jam: Wikipedia Album Entry
Strawberry Jam is the seventh studio album by Baltimore based band Animal Collective. It was released on September 11, 2007, and is the band's first release for domino records. The title and track listing were revealed by band member Geologist on the Collected Animals message board on May 16, 2007. The press response to Strawberry Jam was mostly positive, with some lauding its unique sound as a large step forward in the band's evolution. The album charted on the Billboard Top 200, debuting and peaking at #72.
Strawberry Jam was released on iTunes with an exclusive live version of "Cuckoo Cuckoo", the video for "Peacebone", and a digital reproduction of the album's booklet.
The Album was recorded at Wave Lab Studios in Tucson, Arizona. Band member Brian Weitz explained why they chose this location on the Collected Animals message board:
"dave [Portner] and i were talking a few months back about environments to record and one of us was like maybe it'd be sweet to make this next one a desert record and then everyone was like yeah man we haven't done that yet and it seems like it could fit the songs and the way we want them to sound. that might not make sense to anyone but us because when you think of the desert you think of twangy guitars and morricone soundtracks and jim morrison walking with the ghost of an indian, but we don't really see it that way. we looked at a bunch of studios from southern california to new mexico and settled on one we liked in tucson. plus i've spent about a year and a half of my life living in the tucson area"
Moreover, Strawberry Jam engineer Scott Colburn, who also worked with the band to record the predecessor Feels, knew Wave Lab's owner. According to member Noah Lennox, it was a conscious decision to record the album "in a desert setting."
In a pre-release interview with Billboard, guitarist Deakin described the new album as "chiseled" and "shiver-inducing". According to the interview, the majority of the album's songs were played on the band's live shows from 2005 to 2006, but that there would be, "nonetheless, a few new ones that we've never played live."
Two songs that had been played extensively on the band's 2005–2006 concerts, "Safer" and "Street Flash", were not included on Strawberry Jam. Regarding the songs' absences, singer and guitarist Avey Tare wrote to fans that the band recorded studio versions for both, but decided against including them on the album, "partially due to their length(s)". "Safer" was eventually released as the B-side of the album's first single, "Peacebone", while "Street Flash" and other studio leftovers appeared on the 2008 EP Water Curses.
Title and cover art
The name Strawberry Jam came from singer and drummer Panda Bear as he and the band were on a plane headed to Greece for a show. Upon receiving his complimentary tray of food, he opened up the packet of strawberry jam that had been provided for the bread. As he removed the cover of the packet, he was drawn to the look of the glistening jam, and he expressed his desire for the production of their new album to sound like the jam looked, "that is to say, something that's really synthetic and sharp and futuristic looking," but also "tangy and sweet, almost in a kind of aggressive way in terms of the way it tastes".
Avey Tare created and photographed the cover art. Additional layout and design was done by Rob Carmichael, with whom Animal Collective has collaborated on several other projects.
The album's internet leak on June 12, 2007, was notable in that it was leaked in three song clusters over a period of weeks. Geologist wrote on the Collected Animals board that the first batch of promotional copies were watermarked, and that each journalist's name would be digitally embedded in any extracted files. On June 19, 2007, a letter from the band's publicist was sent to music journalists regarding the leaking of the first three songs:
Last week three tracks from Animal Collective's new album leaked. Within minutes we were able to track the leak to a writer's CD. That person got in more trouble than you care to hear about and was almost fired. The person was also forced to write an apology letter to an entire staff of people and the head of Domino Records along with other penance.
Panda Bear talked with Shout Mouth regarding the band's thoughts on the leak:
The only thing we’re really upset about with the leak is that it’s only parts of it. I think there are six songs out there now. People aren’t even able to get the full experience of the album, which bums us all out quite a bit. So if you’re listening leakers [speaking directly into the tape recorder], put up those other three songs, man, pronto.
The remaining three tracks - "Fireworks", "Cuckoo Cuckoo" and "Derek" - were all leaked on July 4, 2007.
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[Noah:] Mine I want.
I caught you when your line got disconnected trouble.
Respect the hive, it seems like days since you ejected.
From one moment to the next
Reading in the papers to know what's best
Sometimes you don't know yourself
Eating lots of vitamins for your health
Now it's day, I've been trying to get that taste off my tongue
I was dreaming of just you, now our cereal, it is warm
Attractive day in the rubble of the night from before
Now I can't walk in a vacuum, I feel ugly, feel my pores
If I say too bad
I'll take a lesson in my head
I've got to have till I am dead
A Peacebone got found in the dinosaur wing
Well I've been jumpin all over, but my views were slowly shrinking
Mold of the fawn
I have been frozen here for days
With headlights reflecting in my face
I must be cold on your lawn.
How I lost my boy
How I lost my boy
How I lost my boy
How I lost my boy
"Oh, look at me," that sweet boy's plea
His mother cried, "My child's tied his laces"
Why must we move on from such happy lawns
Into nostalgia's palm and feed on the traces
We had a white and blackish sheltie had a name when we first got him
I wish I had taken better care of him but he had it ok
Im sorry when I get unruly when you carry on so much I get a little tired
I hope you get over your teething it's not easy when you feel sick