Track Review: Panda Bear
“Comfy in Nautica”
from “Person Pitch”
Side projects often sound like their “father” band. This holds true with Noah Lennox, AKA Panda Bear, whose song “Comfy in Nautica” could be mistaken for a new Animal Collective song. But alas, it’s just one member of the four. And it’s not bad.
“Comfy in Nautica” starts with lo-fi train tracks that get lost in the beat – short harmonized ahhs, steady quarter note handclaps, stomps, and a synthetic noise-roar. Vocals appear from the beat, soaked in church-like reverb, making “Comfy in Nautica” a modern day indie-experimental Brian Wilson take on the centuries-old concept of the church hymn. Lennox’s melodies and powerfully reverberated voice shine above the simple background psychedelia. I can’t understand most of the lyrics – except the wonderfully optimistic “try to remember always / always to have a good time” – but I find myself making up nonsense to the rest as I sing the unforgettable melody unconsciously throughout the day.
Panda Bear’s double role in animal-themed bands is apparent both in name and song. Comfy in Nautica’s steady, repetitive non-drum beat and song structure recalls Animal Collective to a T. It’s just as good. And like Animal Collective, this track by Panda Bear is just weird enough to stay alive and interesting for four minutes. After a mostly static first three minutes, the beat is overcome by quiet samples, which morph into a low drone. The song is finished.
Panda Bear - Comfy In Nautica
- Austin Bauer -