Making pretty much every music reviewer’s best of 2011 list, The Antlers‘ sophomore album, Burst Apart, finds the Brooklyn-based band coming into their own and building upon the subtle complexity of their debut album (as a group), Hospice.  While it is inevitable that Burst Apart draws comparison to Radiohead’s textured, intricate sound, the album stands on its own with carefully layered arrangements, twinkling guitars, haunting pianos, muffled electronics and Silberman’s gentle yet commanding voice.

The album serves as a faded memory, slinking into your mind with blurry sounds and resurrecting familiar feelings that slip between your fingers.  Peter Silberman’s soft soprano vocals hang in the air, clinging to the tracks as music washes in and out.  Burst Apart covers the entanglements of emotion, whether it is the sad but victorious I Don’t Want Love or the jaded and sharp Parentheses, and never loses focus, maintaining an enchanting aura which glows throughout the album.

Best Tracks:

I Don’t Want Love starts with a catchy guitar riff and fragile vocals barely held together by heartbreaking despair. The song inches towards a hook that swells throughout the track, building strength in Silberman’s attempt at convincing himself of a feeling he needs in order to move forward.

No Windows has a tinge of loneliness thanks to the entrancing vocals, smooth electronics and starry howling which takes up space in the middle of the track, letting the great lyrics take a rest. 

Putting the Dog to Sleep, the closing track, demands patience, with unfocused noise trickling in and out for a minute before the vocals emerges like a mirage.  Silberman’s intro is followed by a sharp, smacked guitar chord, filling (and contrasting) the gaps left by the silence after each line is sung.

When & Where:

This is an album to play when you are suffering from a heartbreak or are in the bizarre mood to capture that emotion.  While the album has subtle hints of hopefulness, it is the desperation in Silberman’s vocals that create or support the same feelings in the listener.

I Don’t Want Love

No Windows

Putting the Dog to Sleep

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