Appropriately enough, Hospiceâ€™s 10 distinct chapters resonate on debilitating sonic and lyrical levels, from the hypnotic harp and tension-ratcheting build of â€œTwoâ€ to the sing-or-sink choruses of â€œBearâ€ and the speaker-rattling peaks of â€œSylvia,â€ easily one of the yearâ€™s most immediate epics. Itâ€™s here, amidst contrasting shards of ambient noise, sweeping strings and smoky horns, where The Antlers truly transcend Silbermanâ€™s singer-songwriter beginningsâ€”a striking escalation of expectations first hinted at on 2008â€™s New York Hospitals EP. The progression doesnâ€™t end there, either. In a move that could be taken as the riff-raking extension of his thorough guitar training (from the age of 6 â€˜til right before college), â€œAtrophyâ€ and â€œWakeâ€ delve into sheets of distortion, subtle shades of soul, cicada-like effects and enough movements to fill an entire EP.
â€œWe were going for something thatâ€™d be dense but not too complicated,â€ explains Silberman. â€œI hate the word â€˜lush,â€™ but I guess thatâ€™s the best way of describing it. The structures are like pop songsâ€”verse/chorus, verse/chorusâ€”but the sound is a little more shoegaze-y or post-rocky.â€
Itâ€™s about to get even more complicated, too, as The Antlersâ€™ Technicolor-tinged trio take all of Hospiceâ€™s songsâ€”and three previous releasesâ€”in a completely different direction, jettisoning a note-for-note rendition of the record for â€œa massive soundâ€ doused in delay, reverb and unrehearsed chaos. And to think Cicci was a stage actor with a desire to drop it all for music just a few years ago.
â€œHospice was the clear indication that this isnâ€™t a singer-songwriter thing at all,â€ says Silberman. â€œWhatever we record next is going to define the three of us as a â€˜band.â€™
He continues, â€œI always figured Iâ€™d be the â€˜shredderâ€™ in a groupâ€¦ But things somehow ended up this way.â€
We wouldnâ€™t have it any other way, either.
US TOUR DATES
12/15/09 – Bowery Ballroom – New York, NY
1/29/10 – Legends of Notre Dame – Notre Dame, IN
1/30/10 – Music – Akron, OH
2/05/10 – Brooklyn Academy of Music Opera – Brooklyn, NY*
2/08/10 – Teh Warfield – San Francisco, CA#
2/09/10 – House of Blues – San Diego, CA#
2/11/10 – Wiltern Theatre – Los Angeles, CA#
2/13/10 – Ogden Theatre – Denver, CO#
2/15/10 – Vic Theatre – Chicago, IL#
2/16/10 – Phoenix Concert Theatre – Toronto, ON#
2/18/10 – House of Blues Boston – Boston, MA#
2/19/10 – Terminal 5 – New York, NY#
2/20/10 – Trocadero – Philadelphia, PA#
2/21/10 – 9:30 CLub – Washington, DC#
* w/ Ra Ra Riot
# w/ Editors