Animal Collective were pretty much riding the crest of a wave with »Merriweather Post Pavilion«, having turned into the most influential and important band on the planet – at least in the eyes of collegiate weird-folk-electro-checkers. However, it has been seven years since then (yes, we’re all getting older…), and after »Centipede Hz« from 2012, which evoked mixed reactions, »Painting With« is the tenth official record by the band from Baltimore, Maryland. Just like »Merriweather Post Pavillion«, the new record was also recorded without Josh »Deacon« Dibb, who does not seem to be the most fixed band member. Once again, focusing on the trio Avey Tare, Panda Bear and Geologist, did the record many favors, considering that the band’s gushy euphoria does not come across as too jittery anymore. Sometimes, the backing tracks appear a bit too overloaded, and some extremely ambitious vocals (especially Avey Tare’s) tend to overstrain the listener, but as soon as Noah »Panda Bear« Lennox is holding the reigns, the tracks are being turned the sunny side up. In songs like »Flori Dada« or »Golden Gal«, Beach-Boys-harmonies combined with psychedelic tendencies remind us of »Merriweather’s« best moments, in which »the sun came up« (as DJ Koze described it accurately back then). Although Animal Collective will probably never get close to their former significance again, it’s still calming to see that they have stayed true to their skew pop approach without being wearisome, random or half-baked.