US - Maryland - Full Moon 125 - 12/05/06
Animal Collective + Oren Ambarchi
The Corner, Melbourne, 6.11.06
I walk into what feels like an industrial generator, but it's actually The Corner, and I've been here before but not experienced this resonance. There's Oren Ombarchi up there on stage with a tabletop guitar and a pile of electronic equipment that I guess are effects processors and the like. The air is quaking and people's conversations sound like vacuum cleaners do when you put your cupped hands over your ears and move them around so the sound washes around your head like the sea inside a bucket. My ribcage aches sometimes too and at moments I worry about my hearing but stay planted to the spot to experience where this resonance will take me. But I get bored and go to the bar to buy a bottle of light beer as I'm driving, and it tastes like shit and I wish there was someone here to chat to.
Thankfully there's Ryan from Mafia Horse Connection at the back of the room as Animal Collective begin the alchemical transformation from four young men with instruments to some kind of irresistible psychedelic portal. Deaken's got a big sphere of fake flowers on his head and it looks great. Geologist has a glowing bone necklace. Avey Tare wears a white shirt adorned with blobs of colour that reminds me of the time when I was twelve when we'd take our school shirt in on the last day and have all of our friends write messages to us. Panda Bear looks like a tiny child hiding behind his curtain of hair, but when he hits the drums he's like an electric caveman.
There's a big tremolo guitarquake that transforms their sweet warbling opening jam into another song, but I can't remember its name. It sounds great, even more rich and satisfying than on record, and I love their records. They play "Grass", "Kids on Holiday", "Purple Bottle" and "Banshee Beat", all delivered with sky-high, wind-in-your-hair ecstasy. There's whooping. Guitars sound like keyboards, voices are like forces of nature, and the tribal drumming is awesome.
All I can do is surrender to the joyful, elastic sound.
Copyright © 2006 Tim Clarke