Am I really all the things that are outside of me?


One of my favorite songs out of all the albums I’ve listened to is Taste by Animal Collective from their album Merriweather Post Pavilion. The song begins with a series of philosophical questions that Panda Bear, the singer of this song, wistfully asks of himself .

Am I really all the things that are outside of me? Would I complete myself without the things I like around? Does the music that I make play on my awkward face? Do you appreciate the subtleties of taste buds?

This is an inquiry of the nature of our own identity. What are we really at the core of our essence and will it ever be shown to others? What do they think of who you are?

My friend and me were having laughs In a living room filled with arts and crafts He said "I like their clothes and their charming ways But what I really want is a simple place With no fashion clothes cause you can't eat those

Here, Panda Bear makes a clever analogy between liking how something tastes and liking somebody for who they are. Our sense of taste is something private, unique, and largely unchangeable. No two people will ever agree on what kinds of foods they find appealing. The very pallet of your tongue is unique to you. In the same vein, everyone also has their own taste for what people they like.

Given this, Panda Bear mourns the fact that we sometimes go to great lengths to mask our own taste. We wear fashion clothes and cover our skin and mask our personalities and hide away our true feelings, never allowing ourselves to be vulnerable, naked, and seen in our purest forms.

Panda Bear closes off the song with a request to those around him:

I'll keep an open mind if you let me in Don't let your temper rise, don't get a bitter face Try not to judge me on my kind of taste And don't go changing clothes when they don't like yours