Hospice (The Antlers album)

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Studio album by
ReleasedMarch 23, 2009
RecordedJuly 2007 – August 2008
StudioWatcher's Woods, Brooklyn
ProducerThe Antlers
The Antlers chronology
In the Attic of the Universe
Burst Apart
Singles from Hospice
  1. "Bear"
    Released: April 2009
  2. "Two"
    Released: June 22, 2009
  3. "Sylvia"
    Released: March 22, 2010

Hospice is the third studio album by American indie rock band The Antlers, and their first concept album. It was initially self-distributed by the band in March 2009, and was eventually remastered and re-released once they signed to Frenchkiss Records in August of the same year.[2][3]


Hospice tells the story of a relationship between a hospice worker and a female patient suffering from terminal bone cancer, their ensuing romance, and their slow downward spiral as a result of the woman's traumas, fears, and disease as a metaphor for an abusive relationship. Frontman Peter Silberman has been reluctant to divulge explicit details regarding the meaning of the record, and the extent to which it is autobiographical.[4]


Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Review scores
AllMusic4/5 stars[1]
The A.V. ClubA−[7]
The Daily Telegraph5/5 stars[8]
The Guardian4/5 stars[9]
The Irish Times4/5 stars[10]
Q4/5 stars[13]
Uncut4/5 stars[15]

The album was released to critical acclaim. Pitchfork endorsed the re-release of Hospice with their "Best New Music" stamp.[12] NPR Music placed the album at number one on their list of the top ten albums of early 2009.[16] At the end of the year, Pitchfork placed it number 37 on their list of the best albums of 2009, praising its "power to emotionally destroy listeners."[17] Beats Per Minute named it the best album of 2009,[18] while Rhapsody deemed it the 24th best album of 2009.[19]

It sold 13,000 copies in the United States by October 9, according to Nielsen SoundScan.[20]


The first single was "Bear", released in April 2009 to promote the self-released version of Hospice. "Two" was the first single released commercially, as a digital download in June 2009. The song's music video features a combination of photography and cutout animation, and was directed by Ethan Segal and Albert Thrower.[21] In the United Kingdom, "Bear" was released on 7-inch vinyl on November 16, 2009, featuring an exclusive remix of "Bear" by Darby Cicci on the B-side.[22] Additionally, an exclusive live recording of "Sylvia" at The Orchard in New York City was released as a download on November 17, 2009.[23] "Sylvia" was issued as the third proper single on March 22, 2010. A music video was produced for the song, directed by Trey Hock, and premiered on the IFC's website on April 15, 2010.[24] The song "Kettering" was featured in the following shows and films: Chuck (season 3, episode 13), Sense8 (season 1, episode 1), The 100 (season 1, episode 10), indie film Camp X-Ray, "Offspring" (season 1, episode 5), Fear the Walking Dead (season 1, episode 6), and Riverdale (2017 TV series) (season 4, episode 14).

Track listing[edit]

All songs written by Peter Silberman. In the liner notes, all songs are given alternate titles.

1."Prologue" (Hospice)2:35
2."Kettering" (Bedside Manner)5:10
3."Sylvia" (Sliding Curtains Shining Children's Heads)5:27
4."Atrophy" (Rings Ill-Fitting)7:40
5."Bear" (Children Become Their Parents Become Their Children)3:54
6."Thirteen" (Sylvia Speaks)3:11
7."Two" (I Would Have Saved Her If I Could)5:56
8."Shiva" (Portacaths Switched)3:45
9."Wake" (Letting People In)8:44
10."Epilogue" (Sylvia Alive In Nightmares)5:25

Release history[edit]

Country Date Label Format Catalog no.
United States March 23, 2009 The Antlers Music CD 7 26167-4620-2 3
August 18, 2009 Frenchkiss Records CD (remastered) FKR041-2
LP FKR041-1
United Kingdom October 19, 2009 Frenchkiss/Studio !K7 CD FK041CD



  • Peter Silberman – vocals, guitar, accordion, harmonica, harp, keyboards
  • Darby Cicci – trumpet, bowed banjo
  • Michael Lerner – drums, percussion
  • Justin Stivers – bass
  • Sharon Van Etten – vocals on "Kettering," "Thirteen," "Two," and "Shiva"[25]


  • Recorded at Watcher's Woods, Brooklyn
  • Mastered by Greg Calbi at Sterling Sound
  • Original release mastered by Timothy Stollenwerk
  • Artwork by Zan Goodman
  • Design by Darby Cicci


  1. ^ a b Lymangrover, Jason. "Hospice – The Antlers". AllMusic. Retrieved July 1, 2010.
  2. ^ "Interview with Peter Silberman". Archived from the original on June 30, 2012. Retrieved July 4, 2009.
  3. ^ "The Antlers: An Album Review". Archived from the original on August 4, 2009. Retrieved July 4, 2009.
  4. ^ Ayers, Michael D. (August 21, 2009). "Interview: The Antlers' Peter Silberman on their strikingly haunting debut Hospice and those nagging Arcade Fire comparisons". The Village Voice. Retrieved August 21, 2009.
  5. ^ "Hospice by The Antlers reviews". AnyDecentMusic?. Retrieved January 8, 2020.
  6. ^ "Reviews for Hospice by The Antlers". Metacritic. Retrieved July 1, 2010.
  7. ^ Kornhaber, Spencer (August 18, 2009). "The Antlers: Hospice". The A.V. Club. Retrieved May 7, 2016.
  8. ^ McCormick, Neil (November 18, 2009). "The Antlers: Hospice". The Daily Telegraph.
  9. ^ Hughes, Tom (October 22, 2009). "The Antlers: Hospice". The Guardian. Retrieved May 7, 2016.
  10. ^ Carroll, Jim (March 27, 2009). "The Antlers: Hospice (Self-release)". The Irish Times. Retrieved July 1, 2010.
  11. ^ "The Antlers: Hospice". NME. 2009.
  12. ^ a b Howe, Brian (August 4, 2009). "The Antlers: Hospice". Pitchfork. Retrieved July 1, 2010.
  13. ^ "The Antlers: Hospice". Q (281): 111. December 2009.
  14. ^ Fitzmaurice, Larry (August 2009). "The Antlers: Hospice". Spin. 25 (8): 84. Retrieved May 5, 2016.
  15. ^ "The Antlers: Hospice". Uncut (151): 98. December 2009.
  16. ^ Hilton, Robin (February 26, 2009). "2009 already better than 2008". NPR Music. Retrieved July 4, 2009.
  17. ^ "Staff Lists: The Top 50 Albums of 2009". Pitchfork. December 17, 2009. Retrieved December 17, 2009.
  18. ^ "The Top 50 Albums of 2009". Beats Per Minute. December 21, 2009. Retrieved January 11, 2010.
  19. ^ "The 25 Best Albums of 2009". Rhapsody. December 29, 2009. Archived from the original on July 31, 2010. Retrieved July 31, 2010.
  20. ^ https://perpetua.tumblr.com/post/293484776/pitchfork-top-10-albums-in-us-sales
  21. ^ "The Antlers — "Two"". Chart Attack. Archived from the original on June 7, 2011. Retrieved August 19, 2009.
  22. ^ Antlers, The - Bear (7″) at Discogs
  23. ^ "Sylvia: Live at The Orchard NYC: The Antlers". Amazon.com MP3 Downloads.
  24. ^ Kim, Brandon (15 April 2010). "Exclusive! Video premiere: The Antlers' "Sylvia" + free EP!". IFC. Archived from the original on 18 April 2010. Retrieved 15 April 2010.
  25. ^ Kaloudis, Evan; Koepp, Brent (December 21, 2009). "Interview: Peter Silberman of The Antlers". Beats Per Minute. Retrieved October 15, 2013. Yep. She is on 'Kettering,' 'Thirteen,' 'Two' and 'Shiva.'