Do you wish Animal Collective had a female member? We’re not there yet, but since Tickley Feather (nee Annie Sachs) has been opening for the band and their sometimes solo, acclaimed drummer Panda Bear recently, we may be closer to collaboration that anyone realizes.
I’ll be the first to admit that noise rock can seem insanely unlistenable if you’re used to the uncomplicated ditties mainstream radio often provides, but with a woman like Sachs, you get a lot of substance. Her first release, out on Paw Tracks (the label run by the aforementioned Collective), emphasizes her four-track love and whispery, strange vocals that can be soothing or awkward, depending on your mood. The Philadelphia-based musician has already garnered quite a bit of praise from the indie crowd, happy for a new heroine with airy vocals and minimalist instrumental tendencies. Following up collaborations on several split EPs, one critic noted that on her new album, she “sounds like she’s singing in the shower,” due to her low production quality, but again, this is endearing.
Tickley Feather does experimental folk justice, and we can use a few more ladies laying down these kind of spacey, woodsy tracks. And while you don’t need one, another reason to love her debut album: interludes between songs of a baby (hers—shout out to a single mom!) saying completely random phrases.
My best suggestion is sampling a sound like Tickley Feather’s in concert. If you enjoy the atmosphere, the people, and loopy performance style, you’ll love her album work. If not, stick to less incomprehensible freak folk or just avoid it altogether.