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Primus - Animals Should Not Try to Act Like People CD (album) cover

ANIMALS SHOULD NOT TRY TO ACT LIKE PEOPLE

Primus

 

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3.66 | 20 ratings

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Cygnus X-2
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars In 2003, hte original recording lineup of Primus, consisting of bassist/vocalist Les Claypool, guitarist Larry "Ler" LeLonde, and Tim Alexander reconvened to record an album eight years since the same lineup released an album (that album was Tales From the Punchbowl) that would be a short thirty minute EP and a DVD consisting of all Primus music videos and many other rarities and assorted video treats. The style of this album is actually unlike any Primus album before it, with most songs experimenting with floating guitar patterns and fuzzy fretless sounding bass and more psychedelic tinges. All of the pieces have their own flare, their own identity, but on the whole some of them just seem to have some padding in them, but of course those padded sections are mainly for purposes when they would play live and extend those songs and improvise from that point on. But beside that, there isn't a lot that can be said negatively about this EP.

The first song is The Carpenter and the Dainty Bride, opening with some sparse and modulated bass tones that have a definite ring and echo to them. A monotone bass beat that keeps a droning groove and a the bass sound has rubbery fretless feel to it. Some repetitive vocals and lyrics somewhat bring down the piece, but for the most part it's pretty enjoyable (I'm quite fond of the guitar work, which ranges from Frippian dissonance to heavy block chords). Pilcher's Squad is a short and concise piece that has some great work on all member's parts. Pieces like this can always be found on Primus albums to add a bit of humor to the foray. There's a nice little bit towards the beginning of the first minute where Claypool yells out, "Go Ler", followed by a three or four second dissonant guitar solo (which has a great Fripp vibe), followed by, "Thanks Ler". The lyrics are quite nice and the vocals are also nice as well. Mary the Ice Cube is a little ditty about an ice cube with some great rubbery bass lines and an interesting underlying guitar motif and percussive pattern.

The Last Superpower aka Rapscallion is the group's venture into more psychedelic overtones, with echoed and touchy bass tapping from Claypool and some mixed percussion from Alexander. During the vocal parts, LeLonde's guitar tone is very ethereal and not really in your face, and his chord based approach (except the acoustic arpeggio based introduction) really helps the song more than hurt it. It's probably the most progressive piece on the album and the live versions are great with superb extensions during the mixed percussion bits. My Friend Fats ends the EP portion of the set with a monotonous and consistent drum beat from Alexander, and though the piece doesn't really evolve much (or at all in truth), it's still a fun listen with some nice bass tapping from Claypool during the instrumental breakdowns (and his solo towards the end is also superb, but better represented live).

In the end, most of these songs seem to be rough blueprints for some serious live additions, extensions, etc. They're not bad by any means, but they aren't the best Primus has come up with and some may not like the repetitive nature of the album. I will say, though, that the DVD accompanied with this EP is rather nice, but you'll have tor read about that in my review for that. 3/5.

Cygnus X-2 | 3/5 |

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