The House

Porches - The House
Critic Score
Based on 21 reviews
2018 Ratings: #621 / 830
User Score
Based on 249 ratings
2018 Ratings: #939
Liked by 1 person
January 19, 2018 / Release Date
LP / Format
Domino / Label
Synthpop / Genres
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Tiny Mix Tapes

Austere without the compulsion of self-restraint and experimental without the drag of formlessness, The House confirms Porches’ primacy as indie-dance mavens. Situated somewhere within the lacuna between darkwave and dance pop, the album revels in nebulous genre distinctions, with Maine showing more interest in reimagining stylistic boundaries than expanding or eliminating them. To wit, Aaron Maine is either the antithesis or the apotheosis of present day indie music.

The Skinny

The House, Aaron Maine's third album as Porches, is an incessantly earnest portrayal of love and regret, decay and change. It is never not self-serious as Maine's lilting voice takes a diaristic approach, singing personal songs full of longing and desire over computerised keys and synths.

Beneath its glossy exterior ... ‘The House' is flooded by feelings of isolation and anxiety, and coloured by a fascination with identity. Maine grapples with the abstractions which anchor us in limited realities, from relationships and occupations to wardrobe and worldview.

Maine's ability to draw out peculiar emotions and thoughtfully pairing them with euphoric sounds in a deliberate way makes The House a natural and more than satisfying sequel to Pool.

Loud and Quiet
Each second seems thoughtfully fashioned, meticulously punctuating the highs and lows of carefree youth and drained adulthood, with voyeuristic minute-long interludes… and not your run-of-the-mill coming-of-age collection. ‘The House’ feels like Porches’ most poignant record to date.
On first listen to his third record, it might seem that the past two years have changed the newly bleach-blonde, earringed man behind Porches more than they have the music. But listen more closely, and you realise that New York’s Aaron Maine has noticeably sharpened the vision of his synthpop solo project.
The Observer

Imbued with a melancholy warmth, The House is accomplished, jaded, romantic, and intricate in its straightforwardness. It’s synthpop you sink into, that you dance alone to – most of all, it’s synthpop that leaves you feeling nourished.

Northern Transmissions
Despite strong emotional cores across the album, it often feels like it misses a bit of a raw soul at times.
Spectrum Culture

Listening to The House, it is immediately clear that this is just the kind of impressive effort fans of the band have been hoping for, with infectious beats and moving hooks galore, as well as a genuinely original vision for what electronic pop can achieve in terms of its sonic and emotional palette.


The House feels like a transitional work, one saddled with stylistic experiments and themes of rebirth, renewal, self-discovery and so on. Perhaps that bodes well for Porches Album #4, whenever it arrives. And perhaps it will tie up some of The House’s loose ends.


An exercise in self-examination, existentialism, and brevity – the average track length is around two-and-a-half minutes -- The House reinforces Porches' standing as a distinctive voice in a crowded field of wistful D.I.Y. indie electronica.

Crack Magazine

It’s a testament to Maine’s flexibility that – much like the jump from Porches’ debut project Slow Dance in the Cosmos into the glossier world of PoolThe House somehow feels exactly like a return we expect from the Porches we know and love; just refreshed, and ever so slightly reconfigured.

The 405

The House has moments where it seems like Maine might have said everything he’s capable of saying with Porches. However, there are enough positives, particularly around the end, to feel like he’s not bled his creativity dry. If he’s going to keep Porches thriving, he might need to step outside his comfort zone - and pool - a bit more.

The Line of Best Fit

Though longtime fans of Porches — or any of Maine’s work — will never get another Pool, The House makes for a fulfilling, if not occasionally excellent listen and addition to Maine’s discography.


The House, the third studio LP to Porches’ name, furthers the exploration of the tension between how you’re seen and how you feel, but never quite locks into the kind of groove that made Pool so satisfying.

The Guardian

The House doubles down on Maine’s previous fusion of dance music and languid crooning, weaving house flavours into a record that can feel emotionally one-note, but sonically beguiling.

FLOOD Magazine

The House as a whole elicits images of a somewhat sad dance party. There’s a perfect level of awkwardness that makes Maine’s coolness approachable. 


Maybe some people will have a sad dance to it, maybe it’s entertaining enough on some level, but despite Aaron Maine’s greatest efforts, there’s no real substance on ‘The House’, it’s just bricks and mortar.

A.V. Club

Maine’s vocals become ... lackadaisical as The House wears on, causing the album to sputter out like a dance party coming to a screeching halt in its first 15 minutes.

Drowned in Sound
We have to draw some lines here. The celebration of the mundane isn’t the sole specialty of novelists any more – every damn chirpy member of the social networks relishes now in the self-centred banal. And yet this is what pseudo-sprite Aaron Maine employs to convince us that he’s a special snowflake – a self-imposed isolation, point blank surface observations, suspended adolescence.
Really just pretty boring
Porches music really doesn't have half the emotional depth he seems to believe it does

The production here is generally clean although the layering in certain parts sounds messy

There's definitely a wide and varied soundscape here which when implemented does bring the more pleasant moments of the record

Lyrics are decent, His voice isn't bad but it gets so fucking droney

droney a real word people

This is very forgettable
Very into what Aaron Maine is up to again on The House. I feel like the sound here is Maine's last record as Porches (Pool) by way of Frank Ocean's Blonde. Like Blonde, The House often eschews accessibility for simplicity and subtlety--there's a smattering of truly euphoric moments, but the real features here are the minimal, romantic ballads that scratch an itch few other artists do for me. A lot of the slower songs here only have a few elements going on, but the combination of Aaron's ... read more
Essential Tracks: Now the Water, Åkeren, Anymore, W Longing, Anything You Want.

A well crafted collection of ambience, club beats, and autotune.
If I had to put my money on who is most likely to have jerked themselves off while creating music, my money would go all in on this incredibly masturbatory snooze fest.

I can't remember a single song from this album
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Year End Lists

#48/The Skinny

Track List

  1. Leave the House
  2. Find Me
  3. Understanding
  4. Now the Water
  5. Country
  6. By My Side
  7. Åkeren
  8. Anymore
  9. Wobble
  10. Goodbye
  11. Swimmer
  12. W Longing
  13. Ono
  14. Anything U Want
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Added on: October 24, 2017