The Antlers put out one of the best albums of the year earlier with Burst Apart. Now the group has put out a confusing EP, (together). Usually, EP’s are releases put in between a group’s proper albums to give their fans something to hold them off until the next album. I’m not quite sure what The Antlers are doing with this release.
Burst Apart was released back in May, and it still sounds great. I can still put on that album and continue to be entertained and moved by it. It’s too soon to be releasing an EP of songs. But here’s the really sad part about these bunch of songs: most of them are just decent re-recordings of material off Burst Apart. Why?
(together) starts off with a remix “Parentheses” and it’s just kind of boring and really pointless. “Tongue Tied” cones and goes smoothly, but it doesn’t leave any sort of impression. “French Exit” is one of the few interesting re-workings here. There’s just enough added stuff to make it an good listen, although it still comes nowhere close to the version on Burst Apart.
Then there’s a cover of The XX’s “VCR” that does nothing. And then we get a handful of collaborations. The first one is “Hounds” with Nicole Atkins, and it goes really well and Atkin’s voice sounds great (as it always does), but what’s the point? The other collaborations have the same feel. “Rolled Together” with Neon Indian only sounds like Neon Indian is there at the beginning of the track, and then it just sounds almost exactly like the version on Burst Apart. And the song drags on for almost nine minutes.
Nothing goes on longer than the final song, “Parentheses” (yeah, again). I guess Bear In Heaven is somewhere on this track, can’t tell. Like hearing the song at the beginning isn’t enough, it also goes on for over eighteen minutes. That’s about fourteen minutes too long.
Too long is a problem for this entire “EP”. How can you even call this an EP when it goes for an hour? Sure, I love The Antlers. But did I need an hour long set of material that just makes me want to their other record? No.
Rating: 4.9 out of 10.