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Oddsac (2010)

 -  Music  -  26 January 2010 (USA)
7.3
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 358 users  
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Opening with torch-wielding villagers and a wall bleeding oil, this experimental film attaches vivid scenery and strange characters to the wonderful melodic wavelengths of the band Animal Collective, revitalizing the lost form of the "visual album."

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Opening with torch-wielding villagers and a wall bleeding oil, this experimental film attaches vivid scenery and strange characters to the wonderful melodic wavelengths of the band Animal Collective, revitalizing the lost form of the "visual album."

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Forest Children Risen
26 August 2010 | by (england) – See all my reviews

Animal Collective's streak of brilliant but divisive work continues; from a musical standpoint ODDSAC is fantastic. They've been working on the film since 2006, and, unsurprisingly, the music is reminiscent of their albums Feels (2005) and Strawberry Jam (2007). For a band so set on changing their style between albums it's nice to see them revisit a less electronic, more unhinged sound. The songs here rank with their best work from that period (And yes, despite the film format there are definite songs, many of the sequences contain singing and lyrics. For all intents and purposes this is a new Animal Collective album.).

It is easy to see why it would be badly received by film critics. ODDSAC is described on the box as a 'visual album' and it works best if you treat it as such. There is no overall plot, but the styles of the different chapters create a thematic whole. Think schlocky b-movie forest psychedelia paint splattered light show.

But would an Animal Collective film have worked with a more cohesive plot or direction? There has always been an abstract streak to their music, a sense of playful weirdness. In that respect, as a fan of the band, it only adds to the experience. The visuals complement and reflect the music well where a less abstract film format might have distracted from it. So, if you're familiar with the band then go for it. You'll be used to the initial sense of confusion and will appreciate the new music. If you're approaching this as someone new to Animal Collective, then, no offense, but you probably wont get it.


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