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Tripping Back Into The Broken Days

The beauty of this album is that every time through, the soundtrack changes.  The first time I was flying through a forest of blue trees.  But they weren’t really trees though.  They were all of my friends giving me advice.  The second time I showed up to school naked late for my calculus test and I wasn’t even in calculus.  The time I actually held on to consciousness, I wandered from room to room.  I kept forgetting what I came in the kitchen for.  Tripping… is like a cheerleader.  It’s really gorgeous and put together nicely.  But boring as hell.  Every song contains the same ingredients, just with different notes.

Nice acoustic strumming gets pestered by what sounds like Marc Almond singing from the bottom of a Pentium processor. Mike Van Portfleet has talent as a vocalist, but prefers to dress it up with the electronics.  “Broken Days” is pretty enough, but would have fared better more organic.  The same formula follows in “It’s Okay To Be Small” though with Tara Vanflower singing sweetly.  Dreamy synthesizers put the shimmering whammy down.  Must fight…must…stay…awa…zzzzzzzz.  Bent chords add rich flavor.  Then it continues in the same pattern; boy, girl, boy, girl.

The lyrics lean to Dickensonian, specifically, Emily Dickensonian.  Much of the visions are nature observed and defined.  Parallels are made to social relationships.  But through the allegories there is always the theme of isolation. First so quietly then so violently/ the train roars so endlessly/ on the desert floor today/cypress green details/summer clouds prevail then rain.  Admirable stuff, and yet so very comfy.

I can’t fault anyone for not using bass or percussion, it’s refreshing sometimes.  But Lycia are in serious need of shaking things up.  Quiet and underplayed is great, but show us what you’ve got.  Let's sing another song, boys.  This one has grown old and bitter.

Ewan Wadharmi

Track Listing:

  1. Broken Days
  2. It's Okay To Be Small
  3. The Last Winter
  4. Asleep In The River
  5. Fades Down Far
  6. Give Up The Ghost
  7. Vacant Winter Day
  8. Gray December Desert Day
  9. Blue Heron
  10. Halfway Between Here And There
  11. Cat And Dog
  12. Pale Blue Prevails

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