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First Listen: Animal Collective

It takes a lot to shake up the comfortable worlds of pop and rock. So much music being released, even by the most talented artists, sounds like a repackaged version of something that came before it. But the wildly imaginative songs of Animal Collective seem to spring from a previously untapped well.

Impossible to categorize, the band itself calls its music "freeform, electronic, horror, gospel, hip-hop, soul, pop madness." On Animal Collective's forthcoming album, Merriweather Post Pavilion, the group showcases a sonic supernova of tribal rhythms, pulsing synths and shimmering vocals, mashed together in a stew of strangely infectious noise.

Domino Records and Animal Collective tried to keep the 11 tracks on Merriweather Post Pavilion a closely guarded secret in the months following its completion in February 2008. But in November, the track "Brother Sport" was leaked online. Now, here's a chance to hear the album streamed in its entirety.

A double-LP vinyl edition of Merriweather Post Pavilion was released in the U.S. on Jan. 6. The CD was released Jan. 12 in the U.K. and Jan. 20 in the U.S.

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