Animal Collective were formed in Maryland by longtime friends and musical collaborators Avey Tare, Panda Bear, Deakin, and Geologist. With a penchant for genre-hopping and studio experimentation, the group drew comparisons to everyone from the Residents and the Flaming Lips to the Incredible String Band and the Holy Modal Rounders. 2009's Merriweather Post Pavilion, the group's eighth and most accessible record to date, cracked the Top 20 in America and peaked at number 26 in the U.K., making Animal Collective the toast of the international blogosphere while also establishing their strength as a commercial force. Solo and side projects were a continual occupation, particularly Panda Bear and Avey Tare, but Animal Collective proved to be the most successful of all the musicians' ventures. ~ James Christopher Monger
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