As of this moment, I’m in Baltimore, on Middle River, about a half-hour from the Woodinville-esque suburb in which I grew up. The nostalgia came flooding back with each new place I went–my first 8 years were spent here.
I discovered some new places too, like the record store in Fells Point ranked #2 in the country by Rolling Stone (in case you were wondering, it’s called The Sound Garden, and no, I’m not sure which came first). Of course, just outside of this record store, I picked up the free Baltimore City Paper, a less hipster, more Baltimorean version of The Stranger. On the cover was a band that I hadn’t heard much about recently, a distinctly Baltimore band that doesn’t really have a distinct Baltimore sound (though that begs the question “Does Baltimore have a distinct sound?”, when Cass Elliott, Tori Amos and All-Time Low all came out of the area, among others). The paper said that the band will playing this Saturday, July 9th, at the place where I saw my first concert. Coincidentally, it’s also the name of the band’s seventh (and breakout) album. I am of course referring to Animal Collective.
For me, I love the band’s aesthetic and attitude, and especially their decision to name their optical-illusion-covered album Merriweather Post Pavilion. I saw my first arena-style concert there when I was a kid (I lied about it being my first concert…just my first HUGE one), and the members of the band seem to have a nostalgic fondness for the venue as well (which, oddly enough, they’ve never played before).
Better yet, like the Baltimore Ravens, their practice facility rests in Owings Mills, about 5 minutes from the house in which I grew up.
While I don’t love all the band’s stuff, I can like some catchy jams. And for the sake of reppin’ Owings Mills, here’s a download.