Animal Collective’s Panda Bear and ex-Spacemen 3 alchemist Sonic Boom turn lavish rock ‘n roll intros into fully-fledge pop songs that come across like a Beach Boys album jammed in a busted cassette player.
Just before lockdown began, Pete Kember (aka Sonic Boom) grabbed a selection of his favorite rock ‘n roll records and made his way to Portugal to link up with Noah Lennox (aka Panda Bear). The duo had worked together before – first on Lennox’s 2011 album “Tomboy” – but never collaborated to this extent. The idea was simple; Kember wanted to create songs using his favorite rock ‘n roll intros, which he sampled and looped to act as the foundation for Lennox’s songs. So on single ‘Edge of the Edge’, we can hear Randy & the Rainbows’ 1963 track ‘Denise’ circling into the ether before Lennox adds his chirpy and characteristic sun-bleached harmonies.
Each song employs more or less the same formula, balancing the lo-fi tartness of the peak blog era (2007?), the Beach Boys’ brightly-illuminated Cali psychedelia and what could basically be described as US hauntology: the stonewashed sound of a long lost past that forecast a future that’s never been more unattainable.