Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Song of the Day #259 - Animal Collective - Applesauce

One the eagle! Two the noble! Three the lizard! Four the soul!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NIbtYzjLuMo

Alright time to take a quick break from the Yeezy express and think about some other megaton albums coming out soon, i.e. AnCo's upcoming Painting With. Wait no first we'll run through today's SWISH WAVES news, 'cause there's some good'ns:

-Even though he shouted him out, Max B, who popularized the term "wavy" in contemporary usage, was upset with Kanye's usage (I think, this aspect of the story seems unsourced)

-But not as mad as Wiz Khalifa, who stepped up for Max B, talking about the "true waves", "don't take the wave", etc, and told Kanye to "hit this kk", a reference to "Khalifa Kush", the titular strain of his certifiable weed-based banger

-Kanye, who apparently has never listened to a Wiz Khalifa album all the way through, didn't realize this and took it as a reference to his wife, Kim Kardashian, via the initials

-And then he BTFOed Wiz on twitter, like, completely "savage" stuff, stuff that makes me say "savage", Jesus, like absolutely insane wonderful Kanye brainsplatter stuff

-But then he realized his mistake and apologized for "eithering" Wiz

-He called WAVES a gospel album

-And posted the latest update of the tracklist sheet aka the most exciting image on the internet

-EARL! And now "Nina Chop" is called "Famous".

We'll check in tomorrow for the latest on this album, which also constitutes the greatest memefactory and perpetual e-fireworks hurricane we could ever ask for. For now we'll focus on Painting With, which is coming a little over a week after WAVES, and is confirmed to be getting two more pre-album singles! Exciting, exciting! But... maybe not as exciting as it would have been, had it not coincided with the Yeezy hype-tornado? Or maybe it's the effect of like... I loved Centipede Hz, I think it's pretty underrated among AnCo fans and even more by the general public, but it isn't my favorite AnCo album... in fact, it's one of my least favorite, lol. So it'd be like if the most recent Kanye album was 808s instead of Yeezus, I might be a bit more reserved in my excitement. And it's not even so much about the quality of the album, but the relative quality, in that I end up going and listening to the most beloved albums in the period before the new one more often than the newest one, and thus it's a feeling of diminished expectations.

Of course, the best way to rectify that is to go back and listen to the latest album, and think "holy cow this is good!", and think that the new one is gonna be this good at minimum, or even if it's this good at maximum, it's still gonna be REALLY GOOD. "Applesauce" isn't my favorite track on CHz, but it's a solid example of their sound and mentality at the time. The beginning is a nice mix of metaphorical and visceral, talking about the joy of eating fruit to allow the creeping fear of death to become all the more real. The connection of fruit-eating with young innocence traces back to "Grass"'s "It's like the apple eating people that we once were aren't there", and also reminds me of a passage in DFW's "All That". The strength of this image of biting into an apple as a kid empowers the inverse image of the fruit rotting on the ground in your elderly years.

But Avey's ultimate conclusion? Despite aging, despite the sweetness of fruit seeming an evermore distant path, he has no need to rush to "blow on the fire". But, uh... there's something past that - the breakdown at the end. This is, imo, the best part of the song... it's the classic AnCo ALL CAPS REPETITION CLOSER that we know and love, but the images it calls up are equal parts oblique and evocative. That is, we all can picture an eagle, a lizard, a noble, but why? Why in that order? And ought we be able to picture a soul, in the same way? It is so confusing to me. At the time this came out, I was reading the (imo masterpiece) Lucifer and the Biscuit Hammer, and somehow the ordering of these elements seemed to mirror the ordering of the knights in a way I had forgotten. Not that there was an actual connection, but it felt like it had that sort of potential. And now, in 2016, I think of the verse labeling on Panda Bear's "Mr. Noah", and maybe it's something like that for Avey?

Geez, I have no idea, but it doesn't really matter, because this song is... I really can't escape this word when talking about AnCo... a total jam. I know that word means about as little as "banger" but there's nothing else I can say. The beginning is a jam but it just gets even denser and gooier and sweeter as the song goes on. When he gets to the "Why would I rush to blow on the fire?" part, it feels like all out, like the very core, and then ONE THE EAGLE!!!, it's perfect. WAVES the AOTY? Painting With the AOTY??? Who knows?? Nah jk it'll be Radiohead LP9.

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