The Antlers’ Peter Silberman tells us about the influences behind new album
'Green to Gold' is out now via ANTI-, and you can get it on limited tan vinyl in the BV Shop.
The Antlers' Green to Gold, their first album in seven years, is out today. "Making records is never easy, but this one was pretty rejuvenating and grounding, in ways that I likely won’t fully understand for years to come," says Peter Silberman. "That elusive sense of perspective that comes with time… well, that’s really what it’s all about." He adds, "I hope this album provides you with some semblance of calm, and a sense of trust in nature’s course. Thank you for listening, and making space for us in your lives." It's a gentle but engaging album and a welcome return. You can pick up the album on limited tan vinyl in the BV Shop and listen to the album, and watch the full-length Green to Gold film, below.
Meanwhile, we asked Peter to offer up some insight to the inspirations behind Green to Gold and he gave us a list of 10 influences that includes artists like Yo La Tengo and Neil Young, books, films, TV shows and podcasts, with commentary for each. Read that below.
THE ANTLERS - 10 INFLUENCES BEHIND NEW ALBUM GREEN TO GOLD
The Wonder Years
Other than The Simpsons Season 3-10, this remains possibly my favorite show of all time. I grew up watching it and return to every few years. I love how most of the show is narration and reflection, with a certain sweetness, sadness, and nostalgia that I haven’t really felt from another show in quite the same way. The passage of time and its effect on friendships was a sizable influence on Green to Gold.
Yo La Tengo
They’ve been one of my beloved bands since I was a teenager, and my favorite records of theirs (I Can Hear The Heart…, And Then Nothing…, Summer Sun… There’s a Riot…) have nearly infinite replay value. I’ve always loved their ability to transcend styles, but lately it’s been the effortlessness that’s been so inspirational. The music is complex and experimental without feeling like they’re trying too hard to impress you, yet it’s inviting and there’s clearly so much care put into it. They manage to sound comfortable without being stagnant or unambitious. Something to aspire to.
Neil Young - Harvest Moon
This one always has been and likely always will be my favorite Neil Young album. I have many memories of Michael and I listening to it on the road, driving through the desert and elsewhere, and I think we both went into making Green to Gold wanting to somehow bring that energy into our music. I don’t know if we succeeded at that, but it was an important touchstone for our mood-board. Every song on Harvest Moon sounds like it belongs there, like it was recorded on the same dusty afternoon.
Chuck Johnson - Balsams
I’d used pedal steel sparingly in the past, but it wasn’t until I spent endless hours listening to this album that I recognized the potential it held. Thanks to having this record on constant loop for a couple years, my pedal steel (on long-term loan from my dad) transformed into an ambient texture and source of motion across all of Green to Gold. You may not always know it’s there, but it always is.
Home of the Brave
The podcast’s creator and host Scott Carrier is a true original and his shows are immersive, like being in the passenger seat on a road trip across the more desolate parts of the country, talking to people you don’t agree with and doing your best to find compassion for them and if you’re lucky, some common ground. Scott’s narration is plainspoken and thoughtful, and his use of field recordings gives an uncanny sense of place and environment. I’ve been incorporating field recordings for some time now, but hearing them so artfully used on Home of the Brave reinforced the choice.
Beatles Anthology Revisited podcast
Though it was taken down for copyright infringement, a friend sent me the ripped files and I spent many hours with this archival history. Just fascinating that such a far-reaching journey spanned so few years, with so much creative and personal evolution in so short a time. The Beatles, particularly post-acid Beatles, have been in my songwriting DNA since I was a kid, but getting so much insight into their process, and revisiting albums I hadn’t heard in years certainly brought that influence to the forefront for many of the new songs.
Ray Bradbury - Dandelion Wine
A series of interconnected, transportive stories set in the idyllic childhood summer of the past. The title refers to a homemade wine of fermented dandelions, kept to catalogue each summer. By drinking it, you’re returned to that particular year. I set out to make an album that might have the same effect, bottling the season and its associated memories and senses.
Peter Wohlleben - The Hidden Life of Trees
An exploration and explanation of the inner workings of trees, how they communicate with one another, their life cycles, nuances and intelligence. The book is scientific but readable for a less-scientific person like myself, personifying these beings in a way that is down to earth and devoid of pseudo-science or magical thinking. Reading (and re-reading) this informed the analogy laid out across the record, and helped me draw parallels between the worlds of people and nature, which are in some sense, the same world.
Richard McGuire - Here
My partner gave me this graphic novel, and its impact was immediate. Essentially, the premise is an illustrated history of one location across all eras of time. I could say more about it, but the story and its effect are so much better through experiencing it.
The Straight Story (David Lynch)
I wasn’t aware of this movie until I read David Lynch’s autobiography. Having been a fan for a long time, I was surprised he’d made a film for Disney, and that it was so heartfelt and not at all weird or scary, and didn’t require decoding. When you remove those elements, you’re left with something melancholic, funny, and patient. It’s essentially a story of reconciliation— how strong-headedness makes that difficult, but time and effort makes it possible.
Pick up Green to Gold on limited tan vinyl in the BV Shop.