Chances are, you might have already heard ‘Lying In The Grass’, whether you happened to be at Baltimore Airport during Thanksgiving (unlikely, I know), or you tried out the Animal Collective painting app. It’s a conceptual release, sure, but at this point what else is there to expect from a band so confusingly successful as Animal Collective. It has a lot in common with the last single ‘FloriDada’, including dizzying synths and overlapping vocals which stagger the lyrics. It begins with a squelchy vocals and scary vocals pitched up and down, before Avey Tare, Panda Bear and Geologist overlap each other delivering lyrics that once again have plenty of meaning, but are hard to dig into. ‘Lying In The Grass’ is funnily enough, about lying in the verbal sense. Behind the puns and jokes, there’s uncomfortable messages and imagery within the song.
For example, a line like ‘Like a twisted stick, let’s dig through the sick and find a level space’ on the surface could be read as the ‘sick’ as in people, or the more literal meaning. The band encourage making mistakes or lying ‘as long as there’s a light to discover it’ – or doing it to find a clear answer. Difficult topic for sure and there isn’t much precedent for it, but that’s where Animal Collective have historically liked to be. The instrumentals, like always, are dissonant and awkward but somehow come together as a result psychedelic flutes (really) and squelchy beats that shouldn’t fit into any song.