Danse Manatee is the second album by Baltimore based band Animal Collective, released in July 2001 on Catsup Plate under the name Avey Tare, Panda Bear and Geologist. Only 1000 copies were made for the Catsup Plate release, but it has since been re-released as a double CD along with Spirit They're Gone, Spirit They've Vanished in 2003 on Fat Cat Records. Band member Geologist, who joined Avey Tare and Panda Bear for the first time on this release, has said that this is perhaps his favorite Animal Collective album, despite its general lack of popularity among fans and critics.
The album was recorded in many different locations, including Avey's parents house, the house the band shared in Brooklyn Heights, and Geologist's college dorm room and radio station. To create the sounds the group made use of guitar, synths, samples, and did percussion with whatever was lying around.
At the time of recording, the band was into extreme frequencies. Their goal was to experiment with intense high and low sounds and how they occupied space in the room and moved around in the listener's head. This created a challenge during the mastering process, as they could not raise the volume of the whole mix without causing the sounds to digitally distort. Geologist had this to say about the recording of the album on the Collected Animals forum:
We used guitars drums synths and made a bunch of sounds on minidiscs and did percussion stuff on whatever was lying around. We recorded part of it at Dave's parents house, some at the old AC house in Brooklyn Heights, some in my college dorm room and some at my college radio station. Basically wherever we could find a quiet spot. We just wanted to explore a new style of playing on record. This was after the three of us had spent most of the summer improvising and playing around with fusing song structure and noise and looking for ways to do it with fluidity. We were also interested in extreme frequencies, both low and high, and how they occupied space in the room and moved around in your heads. That record upset a lot of people, especially the people that really loved Spirit. Most people still dislike it as we saw when Fat Cat released the two of them together. But we're pretty proud of it.