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PHILADELPHIA, PA WXPN, the nationally-recognized leader in Triple A music and noncommercial radio service of the University of Pennsylvania, names Animal Collective as its February Artist To Watch. WXPN Music Director and Host Dan Reed will present the first of the month’s on-air segments on Monday, February 2 in the 4 p.m. hour.

Though Animal Collective has enjoyed an incredibly loyal and passionate fan base for many years, it seems their ninth album, the highly anticipated January release Merriweather Post Pavilion, is finally bringing the group the media attention that many agree is long overdue. Originally from Baltimore, the four members of the collective – Avey Tare (David Portner), Panda Bear (Noah Lenox), Geologist (Brian Weitz) and Deakin (Josh Dibb) – began making music together in New York in the late 90s, and in the decade since have cultivated a sound exploring and blending the edges of folk, noise, ambient and psychedelic music. The unique result has captivated listeners and earned them great critical acclaim, yet this latest effort has lifted the group to an entirely new level. Merriweather somehow manages a seemingly impossible task: not only living up to enormous expectations but also reaching a new level of accessibility without alienating long-time fans. The album flawlessly maintains the idiosyncratic style that defines the group’s work while expanding their aesthetic boundaries, promising that 2009 may just be the year of Animal Collective.

Bruce Warren, Assistant General Manager of Programming for WXPN, said of Merriweather, “Animal Collective have made a genre bending, career defining album.”

“This is a band that really sounds like nothing else,” said Dan Reed, “and that’s quite a feat this day and age.”

For more on the XPN Artists To Watch series and this month’s featured artist, click here

The XPN Artists To Watch series reflects WXPN’s commitment to nurturing fresh, new talent and exposing listeners to the best new music. Each month, the XPN Artists To Watch series spotlights a different up-and-coming performer who has produced an album or body of work that demonstrates outstanding vision, creativity and songwriting ability. Month-long on-air promotion is combined with online features to help audiences discover each artist.

About WXPN
WXPN, the nationally recognized leader in Triple A radio and the premier guide for discovering new and significant artists in rock, blues, roots, and folk, is the non-commercial, member-supported radio service of the University of Pennsylvania. WXPN produces World Cafe®, public radio's most popular program of popular music hosted by David Dye and syndicated by NPR, and the Peabody Award winning Kids Corner hosted by Kathy O'Connell. WXPN also produces the alternative rock service, Y-Rock On XPN as its secondary radio channel in HD that is also available online. WXPN serves the greater Philadelphia area at 88.5 FM, the Lehigh Valley at 104.9, Worton/Baltimore at 90.5 FM, Lancaster/York at 88.7 FM, Harrisburg at 99.7 FM, and the world via online streaming at XPN.org.