Yeah Sung Tongs does give a very sentimental youth feeling even if I also got into it about 10 years ago myself. I heard it in 2004 but I thought Animal Collective were obnoxious pretentious P4K tripe for a long time. Agreed that I am also burned out on most of their other stuff, though I guess I am due for another listen of MPP soon (I forgot about stuff like 'Brothersport' at least) and the polarizing "Painting With" that no one seems to like.
Wow yeah, didn't put together that "I'm Not In Love" and "Star Me Kitten" connection before but you're right. Just heard "I'm Not In Love" on the radio the other day too. Definitely has that smooth highly layered vocal backing like that song does.
Yeah I think the first song that popped in my head when I wanted to hear Automatic was "Sidewinder Sleeps Tonight". One of the catchiest things they've ever done. I agree "Nightswimming" is pretty cheesy and the weakest thing on the album. It was one of the first albums I used to listen to over and over from front to back on cassette when I was a kid so it's impossible not to appreciate every song on there to this day. Heavy nostalgic album for me but yeah "Find The River" never really moved me THAT much compared to other people. It's just a nice closer.
"Ignoreland" I always loved because it sounds totally different from the rest of the album, Stipe sounds pissed off and its kind of hilarious and pumps me up every time I hear it. Plus I remember hearing (I think from Prindle) that it sounds like 80s Yes? Like Tormato or something? I haven't heard that album but that is pretty funny.