Plants and Animals
The End of That - SECRET CITY
FILTER Grade: 80%
By Marty Sartini Garner on February 28, 2012
Montreal’s Plants and Animals first peeked out of their nest with 2008’s Parc Avenue, an album charmingly overstocked with instrumentation that managed to capture the eclectic feel of the group’s adopted hometown. The End of That largely eschews that record’s excesses; there are no Québécoise cheerleaders or harp arrangements here, only cross-legged acoustic jams and staggering electric anthems that narrowly avoid collapsing under their own weight. Even at their most ornate, Plants and Animals have always been a power trio at their core. They play with such vigor that they might as well be fronting an unheard orchestra. What The End of That does share with the group’s debut is a sense of casual sprawl; nearly every song feels as though it could have been pulled from a Saturday morning jam session. The record’s informality causes it to stumble a bit—Warren Spicer’s words occasionally work better as quips than they do as lyrics—but its faults are more than overwhelmed by its sense of communal grandeur.