I've seen The Antlers before, opening for The National (I think) but I never saw them on their own and I'd honestly kind of forgotten about them despite their two stellar albums (2009's haunting Hospice and 2011's Burst Apart). They put out a 4-song EP Undersea last year but it didn't make enough of an impression on me to make me remember their earlier brilliance so I didn't greet their concert for the 5th anniversary of LPR with any sort of significant anticipation. It was more of a "I live a 10-minute train ride away now, let's go to LPR!" thing than "I can't wait to see The Antlers". But boy was I wrong. Their subdued songs sound incredible live, especially in that small, perfect space by the NYU campus, with melodies that wash right over you. It's not "go crazy and dance" type music so I figured a concert venue where everyone's standing is not ideal but really, it was as good as any show I've seen this year. And this despite hardly listening to any of their music over the past couple years. They didn't even play their two most well-known tracks (and my personal favorites) "Two" and "I Don't Need Love." But they did play inspired renditions of "Wake" and "Sylvia" and "Kettering", the explosive buildup tracks off the brilliant Hospice, along with a kick-ass live rendition of the shaky Burst Apart album closer "Putting the Dogs to Sleep" as their final song of the night. They played for over an hour, had great rapport with the audience, and didn't waver once, seeming fully appreciative of the sold-out house and giving back everything we gave to them. I didn't get any videos but here's a few pics and some songs from their catalogue.
- Download The Antlers - "Sylvia".mp3
- Download The Antlers - "Kettering".mp3
- Download The Antlers - "Zelda".mp3