Tangerine Reef is a full-length audiovisual album by Animal Collective (Avey Tare, Deakin and Geologist), in collaboration with Coral Morphologic, to commemorate the 2018 International Year of the Reef. Tangerine Reef is a visual tone poem consisting of time-lapse and slow pans across surreal aquascapes of naturally fluorescent coral and cameos by alien-like reef creatures (note: no CGI or artificial enhancement was used in this film). Tangerine Reef is the sight and sound of a literal underwater collective of animals.
Coral Morphologic is an art-science duo formed by marine biologist Colin Foord and musician J.D. McKay in 2007 in Miami. Pioneers of avant-garde coral macrovideography, their work has been featured on the National Geographic Channel, the BBC, as well as the cover of Vice Magazine corresponding to their 2015 documentary ‘Coral City’. They are currently working under a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) grant to study a population of unusually resilient ‘super corals’ that Coral Morphologic discovered colonizing the submerged urban edge of the highway connecting Miami to Miami Beach.
Coral Morphologic first met Animal Collective after a Miami screening of the band’s first visual album Oddsac in 2010 by giving Deakin a DVD-R of their first coral film demos. After hitting it off over a mutual love for underwater exploration, subsequent collaborations include Geologist’s soundtracking of Coral Morphologic’s short film ‘Man O War’ in 2011, and has continued through two dive trips; one doomed by Hurricane Irene in the Turks and Caicos and the second to the United States’ northernmost coral reef, the Flower Garden Banks. In 2017, the Borscht Film Festival commissioned Coral Orgy, a collaborative site-specific performance by Animal Collective and Coral Morphologic ‘celebrating the cosmic synchronicity of sex on the reef’ in the Frank Gehry-designed New World Center on Miami Beach. The success of this performance ultimately led to this studio recording of Tangerine Reef. Animal Collective also performed this material live at David Lynch’s Festival of Disruption earlier this spring at Brooklyn Steel in Brooklyn, NY.