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Panda Bear
Tomboy - Paw Tracks
FILTER Grade: 89%

By Kyle MacKinnel on April 12, 2011


Panda Bear

While at Boston University, Noah Lennox decided to study religion because he was interested in “the concept of God.” The second Panda Bear record, Young Prayer, was a deeply personal collection of bare acoustic songs, made as a gift to Lennox’s terminal father. Exploring the immediacy of death and the strength of familial bond, Prayer was full of big questions and bigger wishes; the birth of a key transition that continued with Panda Bear’s breakthrough, Person Pitch. Tomboy is the vivid sound of Lennox reemerging at the other end of this journey. Its ambiguous hymns have also gone through a sonic transformation since their live debut about a year ago in Berlin, and even since the seven-inch releases. These latest mixes—aided by Pete Kember (aka Sonic Boom)—are huge, with disembodied voices peripherally swirling in an overflow of reverb. The record’s astral heights just might represent the zenith of reverb. With Tomboy, Lennox valiantly accepts the responsibilities he once invoked on Prayer, now seeming to possess answers to some of the questions as well.

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