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Hotel Neon Moments

Words: Steve Hadfield

The day Hotel Neon released ‘Moments’, our toddler fell asleep on me at bedtime and then cried when I tried to put her down in bed. The cycle repeated for 40 minutes before she fully woke, distraught, and we went downstairs to reset. She was irrepressibly charming and I was annoyed and tired and charmed but also annoyed at myself for not fully appreciating her charm all at once.

An hour or so later my wife took her turn at putting our tiny force of nature to bed. I crashed on the sofa and put on ‘Moments’ for a first listen. I remembered Andrew Tasselmyer tweeting that the new album was really sad. And it is. And that’s what I wanted.

It’s sad and beautiful and simple yet complex. It feels like sitting in a dimly lit room with a toddler who just wants to be held and who you just want to hold but you have to put down because you need an evening. Hazy washes of melancholic drones, occasionally punctuated with ghostly memories of twinkling melody. It builds on the trademark Hotel Neon sound palette while somehow sounding unlike anything they’ve done before with its intensity of feeling. Perhaps that reflects the time of its recording – a trio who deal typically in open soundscapes instead documenting smaller confines at a distance?

As I write this on my phone it is the next evening and she’s asleep on me and ‘Moments’ fills the darkness. Can I put her to bed?

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