Listen, Download: The Strokes — ‘Fast Animals’

by Eric Van Dril · 215 comments

The ‘All The Time’ seven inch comes out on Record Store Day (April 20), and the following song — ‘Fast Animals’ — will be released as its b-side.

You can listen to ‘Fast Animals’ right now, thanks to TSN reader Jared. Here it is…

{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Bobby March 25, 2013 at 8:27 pm

It is strange that most people have heard of the Strokes but not a lot of people seem to have heard a lot of their music. I think their music is catchy but maybe it’s too complicated or not upbeat enough for mass consumption. Or maybe the record company didn’t push them hard enough. When you think about it it’s the record companies and marketing that ultimately decide how mainstream or big a band or musician will be. At least that’s how it seems to be in America.

2 Martha March 25, 2013 at 8:35 pm

I still think its funny pitchfork called the strokes uncool…Yet something like this gets best new album. I’ve listened to that whole album and i had a feeling if my headphones became unplugged any second and someone heard me listening to it, Id die from embarassment. I think music has reverted back to the state it was 15 years ago before Is this it…It needs to be saved again.

The few last good rock album I’ve heard the in past few months is the new Foals record Holy Fire, and funny enough the new strokes record reminds me of it, has the same kind of funky beats and interplaying palm muted guitars.

3 Gabriel March 25, 2013 at 8:37 pm

I disagree Bobby. I think the bands intention can be seen in their music. As people on this site have already pointed out, they have all the essential ingredients for stardom yet make it a point to not break through unlike KOL, for example, where they totally sold out to the mainstream nonsense. Pre Only by the night, they were true musicians who stuck to their roots—hopefully they go back to the days of Youth and young manhood…

4 Bobby March 25, 2013 at 8:50 pm

I don’t think we’re really disagreeing. I think the Strokes are all about the music.

5 Gabriel March 25, 2013 at 8:57 pm

I guess I specifically disagree with “Or maybe the record company didn’t push them hard enough. When you think about it it’s the record companies and marketing that ultimately decide how mainstream or big a band or musician will be.”

I think the record companies don’t care whether a band makes authentic, poppy, or horrible music as long as their records sell. In this case, RCA has probably done more than their share to try to get the strokes to break through to stardom because ultimately that means more money for them. It is simply becoming more and more clear that the strokes are sticking to their guns when they say they want to be underground yet at the same time popular….and like many people have pointed out, they are not music for the masses…they are not played on the radio and if they are, its very infrequent…another reason could be is they don’t put out a lot of music…these are just my opinions of course….its very intereseting to me though

6 Matt March 25, 2013 at 9:01 pm

I can’t wait for their 6th album.

7 Bobby March 25, 2013 at 9:22 pm

Well, it’s hard to say how much push and marketing RCA has really put behind the Strokes, I really have no idea. But I think most mass consumption is based on what people hear on the radio/commercials/airtime through repetition, etc. I doubt most people go out of their way to find music that isn’t already heard on TV/radio, etc.. Maybe the Strokes just aren’t marketable to a large market but it seems like they are still pretty successful regardless. As long as they continue to put out good music (in whatever capacity) and can make a living off it that’s good enough to me.

8 Scoflbopter! March 25, 2013 at 10:17 pm

I have been lurking forever, biding my time and digesting the album before speaking up.

Comedown Machine is absolutely FANTASTIC. Everyone’s posts here have been great, and all the bad reviews are more flawed than the album itself. Ian Cohen reviewed it for Pitchfork, and he’s the one who gets the most backlash from readers and bands themselves. check out for what people have said about him.

There isn’t a bad song on the disk, and at this point they’ve all grown on me. I hated 50/50 until it got stuck in my head for two days straight. Now I get why they included it.

ATT and OWT sounded separate at first (being singles), but have now merged into the album as a whole. I also changed the end time on ATT to make it flow quicker into OWT, which is against the band’s thoughts but really improves pacing.

I agree and disagree that ATT and 50/50 stick out on the album. They did at first, but gradually have felt like they now belong where they are. That’s the thing with listening to something over and over though, so it’s more an ‘over time’ thing.

Welcome to Japan is my favorite by far, and my only wish is that they’d go into the chorus one more time at the end, because it’s set up so perfectly to do just that. Oh well : )

Partners in Crime is my second favorite, and it’s so musically complicated while still maintaining the classic Strokes vibe. It’s really the best example of the Strokes sound evolving.

My other big thought was that CM really has a strong “Japanese” feeling to it. It all sounds like what I imagine driving through Tokyo at night would be like, with all the lights, sounds, and people. It’s like a soundtrack to Lost in Translation made years after the film came out. Especially TO, OWT, W2J, PiC, and HE. Julian’s falsetto is incredibly well placed, and his writing (lyrically and melodically) is simply gorgeous. You can really see the composer in him coming to life, possibly better than on PftY.

The album is paced very well overall, but if I had my way, I’d have put Fast Animals as track 2 and moved ATT to replace Slow Animals (making that the bonus track.) I think Slow Animals is beautiful, but putting Fast animals on the record would have probably led to better reviews, since everyone has mentioned this album being laidback (which i think is cool, but isn’t what more casual fans want from the Strokes.). One less slow song would make a big difference in that assumption, at least in my humble opinion.

I wonder if RCA chose the single and made the band put it as track 2? That’s too much to assume, but I don’t see them doing that by themselves, especially since the vibe/sound of the other songs (even 50/50) makes the record flow better without ATT in that spot. Again, opinion.

I like that it took the band finally releasing this record for people to generally be like “Yeah, Angles should have been way better.” I still love everything on the album except YSR, CMB, and Metabolism. It doesn’t matter what people say, from a pop-songwriting standpoint those songs are simply not great, especially the potential of CMB. YSR is just sonically grating, despite sounding neat, and Metabolism is just the most ‘meh thing the band’s done.

But every band makes mistakes. Personally, there’s been so many times that I’ve thought something I wrote was good, only to despise it a month later. Its incredibly hard to be subjective about something you make, and that’s why every musician is forever disappointed in their output, like Julian has often been described as being. You get into this perfectionist mindset, and constantly want to try to improve something that’s technically finished. It’s honestly miserable, and makes letting go of a song (or other artwork) really hard.

Well, as usual this turned out long. Sorry and thanks for reading! Comedown Machine has a soul and is the best thing the band’s done since FIoE.

9 Dracula's Lunch March 25, 2013 at 11:57 pm

@Scoflbopter!, I wouldn’t be surprised at all to see 80’s Comedown Machine or Call It Fate, Call It Karma pop up in one of Sophia Coppola’s future films. I agree with you about the cool Japanese vibe.

10 Samster March 26, 2013 at 12:00 am

I think to answer thenquestion of arenthenstrokes mainstream you’ve got look past the top 40 stigma and grammies and broaden your minds, they’re big enough to get coverage in big magazines, honestly big enoughnto get extremely rich, concerts pretty much always sold out…if that is you as a musician you’ve hit mainstream pretty hard hahah. Part ofthe strokes marketing which more people should open their eyesnto is to appeal to people who think they dont get played enough, serves to feed the ego of the consume in distinguishing them from the rest, sure many people you dont know like the strokes, i’d say look at the bigger macro picture, particularly south america, MASSIVE IN MEXICO. If you read the coverage they got in their early years espeicially they really were hailed by everyone intrested in rock as this is it.

11 Samster March 26, 2013 at 12:04 am

the fact that so many people post on this site proves that, I’m sure eric has statistics for the amount of hits the site gets

12 Joseph A March 26, 2013 at 11:21 am

The cd copy of the album I ordered finally came in. Yay! Now I have to wait for the vinyl album

13 Martin March 29, 2013 at 8:51 am

Maybe I’m dumb but how can I download FAST ANIMALS ?

14 Sergio March 30, 2013 at 5:54 pm

any link to download it?

15 Andy May 5, 2013 at 11:56 am

I just feel they are maturing; you listen to “Is This It?”, they’re early 20s and i even think Nick was 19! So now they’re 30 and no longer want to be “rock stars”, as the last time they did, Albert went to rehab and Julian got bored and wrote his own stuff. I think these changes are going to stay due to the reorganisation in the studio and a clear change in influence, but i kinda like all of they’re stuff so i’m not really complaining… just my opinion!

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