ANIMA! follow a stream of delectable alternative electro offerings with a masterful second album ‘Grow Your Garden’ – out now.
Arielle Vakni and Vicente Espi originate from California and Cape Town, South Africa. Enchanting millions of listeners since releasing their self titled debut in 2016, the duo have earned a place in people’s hearts next to their founding inspirations Sylvan Esso, Metronomy and Little Dragon. ‘Grow Your Garden’ is a bouquet of their diverse influences – a touch of disco, vintage electronic and progressive lyrical expression ties together their album’s message to cultivate things that shape your self growth.
New singles ‘Aorta’ and ‘Ear to Ear’ are power movers, bringing back the sound of Roland 707s drum machines, cowbells, and vintage synths for dancing. Their first blues-rock single ‘Toughest Man’ is illuminated by a hand-drawn animation by the US artist Amanda Bonaiuto and features on It’s Nice That. Exploring the song’s reconnection with empathy, the music video follows a man’s unexpected journey to embracing his emotions. Their second music video is a stop-motion animation by UK artist Trevor Hardy at FoolHardy Films who makes ‘Aorta’s disco backdrop the centerpiece for a woman’s will to grow her joy in a seemingly mundane life. Their artwork is also created by their visual collaborator since their first album Dylan Vandenberg.
‘Overflow’ and ‘Streaks’, holds ANIMA!’s signature ability to make colourful instrumentation indistinguishable from Arielle’s luscious vocal expression. Unafraid to bring alternative electronic to a place unknown, they welcome listeners into expanding soundscapes of places that they may have never been before. Songs like ‘Africa’, entwine African percussion with the magical field recordings of Kenyan Maasai sent to them by their friend. Also transporting us to South America, the charango features heavily. A tiny ten stringed instrument evolved from the spanish guitar family spills sunshine through ‘Ear to Ear’ and in between the consoling vocal chants of ‘One Hundred Pieces’.
But to Vicente and Arielle, Grow Your Garden is a record they hope offers something more. In their words, they write: “Grow Your Garden is a reminder that we’re all born with something unique and equally important within us. We are all given seeds to grow into into abundant plants that help heal and nurture the earth. Your garden are the ideas, actions and dreams that keep you going every day, that give you a reason to trust your gut and make something beautiful out of your time on this planet. Nobody can take it away from you and nobody can tell you it doesn’t matter because even a small garden can feed you for a lifetime. So trust your intuition, put in the hard work, and celebrate what makes you different. There’s nothing like walking through a beautiful garden that makes you want to plant your own.”
Stream the album in full here.