If you're as influenced by Animal Collective's music as Danny Perez is, you should definitely check out the visual album, "ODDSAC", directed by Danny Perez with sounds and music by the members of Animal Collective.
Last night, I attended L.A.'s special screening of the film, which was a roughly hour-and-a-half-long stream-of-consciousness acid trip for the visual senses. (The San Francisco screening is this coming Wednesday, March 24.)This film channels the same spirit found in both Animal Collective's albums as well as their music videos, so having the band come up with the soundtrack to the film was very fitting. The film itself takes the viewer on a very interesting, likely acid-inspired, journey that very loosely reflects a 1960s' campy horror flick, complete with a scene in which a vampire-like creature attacks people camping. (Just a warning for huge fans of marshmallows/s'mores: After seeing this part of the film, you won't look at a roasted marshmallow the same way again.)
To get a taste of the film, please check out the trailer below:
As a whole, the film doesn't really make sense, but, then again, it isn't supposed to. In the Q&A session with director Danny Perez and Animal Collective, sans Panda Bear (Noah Lennox), Perez and the gang shared that they refer to "ODDSAC" as a 'visual album' rather than a film because it lacks the transitions between scenes that is required in film media and, in this sense, is more like a music album, in which individual songs are quite independent from each other and don't need to flow or transition into each other in order to come up with an album in which they work as a cohesive whole. Danny Perez also cited YouTube, in addition to the music of Animal Collective, as an inspiration for the film, since, like the film, one can watch a series of small video clips that are totally unrelated to each other in sequence.
"ODDSAC" is the fruition of four years of work by both Danny Perez and Animal Collective, overlapping with the recording of both Strawberry Jam and Merriweather Post Pavilion. In making the film, the band members said that the process of creating the visual album was not strictly composing music to pre-shot scenes, but that it was more of a give-and-take between the visual and auditory aspects of the film, meaning that some of their composing would inspire Perez to come up with a scene and vice versa. Much of the filming was done in upstate New York on the lawn of a friend of Danny Perez, as well as in the Boulder Field in Pennsylvania's Hickory Run State Park and on the property of one of the band members' mothers.
This visual album, although rather off-the-wall (as to be expected for Animal Collective and especially director Danny Perez), is very interesting to watch and certainly expands the mind, whether it be in the altered or unaltered state. In my opinion, the most exciting part of the film, however, is the fact that Animal Collective is embracing other mediums to enhance the artistic expression of their music. I, for one, really hope that they continue to pursue creating things like this visual album and hosting events like the one they held at the Guggenheim Museum earlier this month. I find it refreshing to find a collection of artists who not only come together to make music, but also seek to expand their artistic vision, and I hope that more bands take note of this and embrace it themselves.
For more information about Animal Collective's exhibit at the Guggenheim, please click the link below: