hotels - on the casino floor

  • Cat No : hsr077
  • Label : Hidden Shoal
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On The Casino Floor sees Hotels take their addictive and singular meld of post-punk, shoegaze rock and cinematic pop and launch it into outer space. The band has managed to leap headlong beyond the consummate song craft of acclaimed sophomore album Where Hearts Go Broke into the creation of a wildly inventive and immersive song-suite. The concept album’s seven masterful cuts tell the story of a secret agent, his former mentor and current arch-nemesis, and a nefarious prince’s plan to destroy Earth during the grand opening of the universe’s only outer space casino complex... The scene for this epic adventure is set by ‘From The West’, Blake Madden’s mellifluous baritone imparting a romantic yet edgy tale in which “love becomes a home” over tumbling drums and wooshing synths. This initial propulsion is halted by the gorgeous Brian-Wilson-meets-Mercury-Rev melancholy of ‘Lonely Islands’, with its shimmering yet hesitant melodies and fuzz-bass crescendos. The title track is perhaps the album’s dreamiest and most uplifting cut, enrapturing the listener with over seven minutes of majestic astral pop, before noir-punk single ‘The Bat Watusi’ ups the tempo with its insistent rhythm section, sci-fi synths and unashamedly rocking guitars. The song repeatedly strips itself back to a muscular yet dreamy core, only to build into a tight celestial rock frenzy. The brief instrumental ‘Smith Lands On The Casino Planet’ reprises the synth theme of ‘From The West’ before ‘Trouble At The Consulate’ darkens the mood. Akin to prime New Order, its reverb-laden bassline, metronomic drums and yearning synths muster a brooding anxiety-disco vibe. Then, the cascading guitars of finale ‘Sleep In Fame’ bring to mind the John Barry theme to the classic Bond movie You Only Live Twice, doused in some of the best shoegaze and dream-rock dynamics you’re likely to hear. It’s the perfect goosebump-raising send-off to an incredible album, tying up the album’s narrative ideas before the final credits roll. CD comes with a stunning limited edition poster designed by Stuart Medley

“Hotels fuse elements of new wave, goth, and surf so seamlessly that genre tags will be the last thing on your mind when you hear their bittersweet, atmospheric pop songs” - Time Out New York

"With angular guitars, sober vocals, omnipresent synths, and a taste for the cinematic, Hotels come off like the ultimate ‘80s soundtrack band, something akin to a cross between the dreamy haze of M83 and the angsty garage rock of The Strokes." -popmatters

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