The Antlers‘ lush, grandiose, all-encompassing soundscapes seem, at this point, almost meticulously constructed to encourage wallowing in self-pity. Ever since their lauded, albeit harrowing, 2009 concept album, Hospice, the band has excelled at weaving incredibly personal narratives with emotional, musical ambience (see Burst Apart‘s inescapably sad album closer “Putting the Dog to Sleep“). Their latest full-length, Familiars, is out June 17 in the US and does not look to alter this seemingly golden formula.
“Hotel” is our second taste of the aforementioned LP and perhaps their most career-affirming moment to date. The first single, “Palace,” swelled with lush pianos and horns but failed to entirely deliver the introspective punch we come to expect from the Brooklyn trio. On “Hotel,” the place in discussion acts, quite literally, as an isolated chamber of contemplation, perfectly translated in the lyrics and instrumental. “In the hotel, I can’t remember how the past felt / And in a strange bed, I keep sleeping with my past self,” whispers singer Pete Silberman over percussive drums and muted guitar. The track culminates with a sultry guitar solo in its final minute — a complete and total realization of The Antlers’ best musical qualities.