Bad things first: the formula's exactly the same for nearly every song on Citay's second album, Little Kingdom. Heck, I'd even venture to say that about 85% of the record sounds the same. They're all psych-rock/folk numbers, with swirling guitars, synths straight out of prog-rock circa 1976, Moogs from outer space, strumming acoustic guitars, and men and women harmonizing over big, epic rock numbers. In short, shit could get old, man.
But it doesn't. While the song might remain the same, when it's of a quality, does it really matter? In Citay's case, no, it does not. Ezra Feinberg and Tim Green did something rather astute: they've created a few basic circular melodies and they've crafted an album's worth of songs around them. As convoluted and high-falootin' as that might sound, it's true; when you listen to "Former Child," you'll hear that the melody seems to float around in a circular method; listen carefully, and you'll hear notes and melodies start to repeat themselves. Repetitive motion could be monotonous, but Green and Feinberg have enhanced these patterns with wonderful things: the wonderful electric guitar solo on the aforementioned "Former Child," the wonderful synth patterns on "A Riot of Color," and the utterly dreamy singing on the title track. The result? Something heady, something mesmerizing, and something that will leave you thinking, "Didn't I just hear that song?" Or, as I discovered, "Wait, that sound wasn't in there the first time I heard it!"
At the end of the day, you really shouldn't overanalyze Little Kingdom. I know I found it bit difficult to think of what to say about this record, because it puzzled and confounded me. I was too caught up in thinking, "These songs are all the same!" When I stopped thinking too hard about trying to find the right words to describe it and I simply listened to it, I discovered that that's what you're supposed to do here: shut up and listen. Slap on some damn headphones, while you're at it: it'll blow yer mind!
Listen To: "First Fantasy"
Little Kingdom is available now on Dead Oceans
Labels: Citay, Dead Oceans, reviews c