Familiars is the fourth studio album by Antlers after a relatively fallow three years which saw the release of just two EPs: Together and Undersea. Familiars was self-produced but the talents of Chris Coady (Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Future Islands) were utilised to mix the album.
Familiars is available on indies only opaque purple and black splatter vinyl LP and CD
Vinyl Double LP £18.49 TRANS176LP
2LP + CD on Transgressive.
- Shipping cost: £4.50 ?
Vinyl Double LP £18.49 TRANS176X
Ltd indies only opaque purple and black splatter vinyl 2LP + CD on Transgressive.
- Indies only
5/10 Andrew Revis 4th December 2014
More churning soundscapes and ethereal lullabies from Brooklyn dreamers The Antlers, and third time around they've held nothing back. There's an awful lot going on here: strings, brass, keys, synthy things whirring all over the place, sparky percussion flourishes, and, of course, Peter Silberman's angelic voice. That voice can still hold a listener's attention like few others.
Familiars really does sound so much denser than both their previous albums, Hospice and Burst Apart. The problem is that it demonstrates no progression whatsoever from those sublime offerings. It sounds like an exercise in taking the less interesting moments from those records, Burst Apart especially, and stretching them out so they last about six minutes each, nine times over. Perfectly pleasant in isolation but rather laborious and a bit dull over a fifty-plus-minute album.
Compared to the fanciful, upbeat, gossamer-light Burst Apart, Familiars can feel like a bit of a dirge. At times it feels like a 45 being played at 33. It is still lovely in its own unique way - soothing and relaxing, muted guitars and delicate drums - but this time they've crossed the line from drowsy into narcoleptic territory. Maybe back to basics next time round, chaps. And by 'back to basics' I mean 'write some tunes'.
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