Track by Track is a recurring feature series in which artists guide readers through every song on their latest release. Today, Home Is Where take us through their new album The Whaler.
Today (June 16th), fifth-wave emo quartet Home Is Where have unleashed their latest project, the ambitious, genre-fusing, and conceptual The Whaler. Building on the themes and sonic landscape of their excellent 2021 album, I Became Birds, the new LP is broadly about the end of it all, set to fuzz-folk jams, emo freakouts, and anxious anthems.
“The Whaler was built around the idea of simultaneously being bored and afraid,” vocalist Brandon MacDonald tells Consequence. “Without getting too deep into the weeds, the album as a whole tells the story of the whole world being stuck in a time loop on 9/11/2001, and like with tape loops, the more it plays out, the more it degrades. People grow older and things change, but the collapse of the World Trade Center happens every morning.”
She continues, “It has happened so often now that the loop is almost completely disintegrated, things are falling apart, and whales are offering themselves to harpoons that the narrator didn’t even know they were holding. The end of the world isn’t some grand event, it’s just another day.”
For such a darkly absurd premise, however, the music of The Whaler refuses to wallow. Instead, it frantically jumps around different tempos, genres, and volumes, resulting in danceable sing-alongs fit for the apocalypse. The performances are just as thought-out and passionate as the narrative, and despite its brief runtime, the record sounds as grand as a blue whale.
Put all together, The Whaler is the hyper-modern concept album 2023 needs. And with its cyclical tracklist, listeners might find themselves sucked into a loop much the same as that of the album’s story.
“It ends exactly where it began,” MacDonald says of the holistic approach to the album. “Somehow smiling, it’s like that sometimes.”
Listen to The Whaler below, followed by MacDonald’s Track by Track breakdown.
In support of the album, Home Is Where are hitting the road for a North American tour. Grab your tickets here.