My iPod #263: Animal Collective – Derek

A very early post today. I will soon be off to visit my friend at his uni for his birthday so in order to prevent myself from having to do three entries when I come back on Sunday, here is the “Derek” – the last track from Animal Collective’s 2007 album “Strawberry Jam“.

I recently listened to “Strawberry Jam”, about a week ago or so. The only other album I had listened to in full was, what is probably considered to be their best, “Merriweather Post Pavilion”. That album sounded like it was recorded in another universe, and considering ‘Best Ever Albums’ had “Jam” rated as their second best I thought I might as well give it a listen. First to see how it sounded, and to figure out whether it was as good.

I can conclude that I do like “Strawberry Jam”. I’ll have to listen to it again because it normally takes me more than one to really get into any album. But “Peacebone” and “Derek” were ones that left a mark.

“Derek” did because of its time signature changes and innocent melody further accentuated with Panda Bear’s lyric where he ‘talks’ to his child about Derek, the old dog he used to own. He realises that he didn’t take care of him that well, and is not prepared to make the same mistake again now that he was a parent. He is ready to take on this great responsibility. A sudden clap begins the triumphant ending where Panda lets his child know that he/she can always count on him when the time comes along with a rampant stomping beat a bit similar to “We Will Rock You”.

A very heartwarming way to finish an album.


Author: Jamie Kyei Manteaw

An English student at Coventry University who spends most days listening to music (old and new) and reading and writing about it, however informal it may be. And studying too, obviously.

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