Album Review Avey Tare - Cows on Hourglass Pond

Avey Tare - Cows on Hourglass Pond

A new kind of psych-folk he can proudly call his own.

Rating:

The third solo album from Animal Collective co-founder Avey Tare is very much a continuation of the sound he established on 2017’s ‘Eucalyptus’ - a stunning blend of acoustic instruments with warped sound effects and a psychedelic production.

It’s a dreamy delight from the very start, with opener ‘What’s The Goodside?’ setting an early benchmark. Soft, harp-like strums and a simple, lo-fi beat move the song along while signature woozy vocals recount his latest acid fantasy (“we’re getting old now, babies are for milking”, anyone?). The song reaches a wonderful climax at the midpoint, when an acoustic guitar is introduced to the mix before the six-minute journey falls apart in a blissed-out conclusion.

‘Nostalgia for Lemonade’ is another highlight, with synth whirrs and an eerie organ creating a curiously sad, but powerful hook that has Avey yearning for “my only lemonade.” Lead single ‘Saturdays (Again)’, meanwhile, is a more briskly paced rendition of the acoustic-guitar-and-echoed-vocals formula that acts as the crux of the album, and serves as a great summation for the record as a whole.

These trippy soundscapes might sound like nothing more than bedroom experimentation if it were not for the uniquely melodic vocal work and spaced-out production applied to them here. Frequently unintelligible, and downright bizarre lyrics only serve to add to the personality of his genre-bending music. Ultimately, ‘Cows On Hourglass Pond’ is a new kind of psych-folk that Avey Tare can proudly call his own.