October 17 2007
Video, as a word, is linguistically interesting for a number of reasons. I’m thinking roots here, specifically some ancient Sanskrit connections. Sanskrit, often compared as the Latin or Greek of South Asian civilizations, is actually even older than these two and is in fact more like the mother of all of our languages here in the West, hence Indo-European. So words like video, which have an “origin” in Latin have even deeper origins in Sanskrit.All this build-up just so I could get to this did-you-know moment; that the root word for video is Veda and so the association is with wisdom. That said, I have no idea what these two videos have to do with wisdom. In fact you may find them a bit disconcerting, but the music is good so if you find yourself getting all freaked, just close your eyes and listen…
The first video is Animal Collective, they’re from the Maryland area but have moved their hipster selves over to NYC since and are making some phenomenal music and a bit experimentally at that. Gotta love that alien love. The next video is band member Noah Lennox’s project, Panda Bear. I just love this song, lots of space and something oddly Beach Boys about it (though I can’t really say why.) It’s a nice trance if you let it.
The first time I heard Panda Bear cut “Bros,” I was at Atomic Records and spotted it mainly for its cover. It stuck out mainly because it was sparse and stylish almost like some Polynesian mandala until you take a closer look, but a beautiful collage nonetheless, artsy and tribal. I listened to it, and wasn't sure so I skipped it and forgot.
Later, and quite randomly had an encounter where I heard it and had to know what it was, got a copy, listened to it later and disliked it...after all that. It wasn't until I happened to listen to it as I was drifting off to sleep on some random afternoon catnap, that I understood. It's a deep song, almost churchical, feels as if it was recorded in a cathedral and invites a very visual but meditative state of mind.
And cathedrals Mr. Lenox would have aplenty living in Lisbon, where the Old World of Europe is constantly influencing more modern, electronically driven music styles. He plays the drums in Animal Collective's live shows when not recording as Panda Bear or his other band Jane. Enjoy.
And here is a sort of video remix of "Bros." from Panda Bear's latest album Person Pitch .