Thursday, July 10, 2014

Gut Feeling: The Hotelier - Home, Like Noplace is There

The Hotelier – Home, Like Noplace Is There
Tiny Engines, 2014

There isn’t enough space on my iPhone for too much music. Frankly, there are too many pictures of my baby, and even though I deleted the blurry ones, there are photos and videos I just can’t bring myself to get rid of even though they’ve been transferred to both my computer and iCloud. For six months, one album has avoided being cut from the 10 or 15 I keep on my phone. Usually, album’s cycle out as I absorb them and review them, but the Hotelier’s Home, Like Noplace Is There gets a stay of deletion. And really, it’s not even close. I haven’t written about this album even though I listen to it at least once a week. It’s one of my favorite albums of the year, and one reason for that is the fact that I haven’t been able to distill this album’s essence into words. It’s full of big, sweeping, grandiose, emotionally intense, heartbreaking, and deeply satisfying songs that resonate on a wave of emotional honesty that I require from any record I’m going to spend a significant amount of time with.

Home, Like Noplace Is There is absolutely relentless. If you’re not getting pummeled by Christian Holden’s devastating vocal performance, you are certainly being pummeled by the big, building guitars weaving some of the most satisfying and moody work the new emo revival has to offer. That, or the perfectly placed whoa-OH-ohs, the beautiful balance of incredible intensity and deathly quiet and the way both of which seem equally capable of shattering your heart. As lovely as this album often is, full of gorgeous melodies and passion, the songs are packed with ugly truths being stared straight in the face. Addiction, death, betrayal, all the heavy stuff heaped over some of the rawest, most compelling music I’ve heard all year. Maybe I’m biased (I did grow up on Brand New and this is hitting those exact same buttons and then some) with my penchant for artists who overshare and songs told in dog metaphors (“Housebroken”), but either way the chest-clearing, catharsis incarnate tone of Home, Like Noplace Is There is something to be heralded.

You can listen to (and acquire) the album in its entirety at Bandcamp, which I recommend as this is a real, proper capital-A Album to be experienced in its sequenced entirety.

"The Scope and All of This Rebuilding"

"Discomfort Revisited"

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