Down There - Avey Tare
Down There Image
Metascore
76

Generally favorable reviews - based on 23 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.4

Generally favorable reviews- based on 12 Ratings

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  • Summary: The Brooklyn-based Animal Collective frontman's debut solo album is both dark and upbeat, as he experiments with energentic electronic production and soulful, slow-moving instrumentation.
  • Record Label: Paw Tracks
  • Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Indie Rock, Lo-Fi, Experimental Rock, Indie Folk
  • More Details and Credits »
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 20 out of 23
  2. Negative: 0 out of 23
  1. Dec 22, 2010
    80
    Down there, his most accessible work outside the confines of Animal Collective, revels in that upside-down gravity. [Nov 2010, p.61]
  2. Oct 29, 2010
    80
    It's an album almost too personal, too suffocating, to match the transcendence of Portner's best work with Animal Collective; still, his vision of sad swampland, and its beautifully intricate and melancholy soundtrack, is haunting - the sound of someone confronting their demons and coming away stronger.
  3. Oct 25, 2010
    80
    It's a trawl through pop's murky subconscious, all mangled electronics, lurching beats and warped mantras. [Nov. 2010, p. 116]
  4. Nov 5, 2010
    80
    Musically, the influence of dubstep is readily apparent. [Dec. 2010, p. 99]
  5. Oct 25, 2010
    75
    Down There, David Portner aka Tare's debut solo joint, is a further dot on the still-empty dotted line of Animal Collective's career, built on a span of eight or so albums through which these guys have willfully, lovingly defied expectations and definitions and even maybe their own individual talents.
  6. Oct 27, 2010
    75
    Down There harnesses the core duality upon which the AC empire is built: a warm and pure pop ├Žsthetic folded harmoniously into layers of murky swirls and drips.
  7. Oct 29, 2010
    40
    This is strictly a headphone listen--or, more likely, non-listen. [Nov 2010, p.108]

See all 23 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 3
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 3
  3. Negative: 0 out of 3
  1. sdk
    Nov 2, 2010
    10
    Avey Tare has created one of the best experimental pop records of the year. Tare has the uncanny ability to syphon new and interesting sounds from the ether with Down There, a quaint, substantive record that will (IMHO) withhold the strain of time and musical prowess across the collective consciousness. He has truly created a new genre. Expand
  2. Oct 30, 2010
    9
    Avey Tare has finally shown us what he brings to Collective, and I was caught totally unawares by this album. I expected noisy, cluttered songs with scattered yelps and screams based on Portner's other projects, but Down There is a lo-fi, densely layered album that creates a unique distant sound quite unlike anything else I've ever heard. I fell in love with Portner's voice on Spirit, because I felt his honesty and pain coming through, a quality I felt was lost on later AnCo albums. Down There does an amazing job of bringing that kid back out of Avey. It seems that many AnCo fans think that Panda is the yin to Avey's yang, and the two run a system of checks and balances on each other. This album proves that Portner can control himself from getting to weird and wild on his own, and in fact, my only complaint with this album is that maybe he did tone it down just a little too much. I personally love the screams on songs like Reverend Green, and I think maybe just a little more of a rock-out on one or two songs on Down There would have made it a 10.

    Overall, this is a dark album that certainly takes multiple listens to get into, but for any fan of older AnCo stuff, or anyone who appreciates vocals becoming layers in the songs, rather than slapped on top of them, this is a fantastic, rewarding album. Additionally, because the album is so short, I find myself listening to it straight through most of the time, but if you're looking for the standouts, I recommend Laughing Hieroglyphic, Oliver Twist, Ghost of Books, and Lucky 1.
    Expand
  3. Oct 29, 2010
    7
    Swampy stuff, right? A good debut album. I'd go with Lucky 1 and 3 Umbrellas.