By Jay Rowland
City Light is a band brought to us from four different guys that worked together via the US postal service. Singer/songwriter, Matt Shaw began by mailing tracks back and forth with his friend and producer, Nick Andre. As the project grew they got help from Andrew Fitts (Airport Cathedral and Aqueduct) and Denver Dalley (Desaparecidos, Statistics, and Intramural) and City Light was born. The band has captured a great blend of punk, eletronica, and shoe-gaze pop, making for an interesting sound. With their sophomore album, Burned Out Bright they have really come together and matured their sound that is sure to please all types of music fans.
The album opens with the song, I See You, which sets the dreamy quality of the entire album. The vocals, at times remind me quite a bit of Eels vocal sound. The steady percussion drives the song while not overwhelming the entire thing. It makes for a great intro to the album. I See You blends almost seamlessly into Let’s Not Speak. The song, Let’s Not Speak could almost be a continuation of I See You. It continues the dreamy shoe-gazer sound that the band has seemed to perfect. Sometimes multiple songs blending together becomes boring, but City Light have the ability to not bore you as they string one song into the next. The song, I Want What’s Bad For Me brings to mind You’d Prefer An Astronaut (the third release from the band Hum). The song continues the beautiful stream of consciousness that the first two songs of the album began.
Evil Twin helps to mix up the sound of the album with more of a focus on Matt’s throaty vocals. The song keeps the dreamy sound that by now you either hate or love, but still changes up the sound enough to keep the album from all sounding the same. Hwy 99 picks up the beat a little with a pop sounding percussion that instantly hooks the ears. The lyrics make you want to sing along with this catchy tune from City Light. The song Hour On The Hour is by far the most upbeat song on the album and really shows off their range of talent. It blends the percussion and vocals allowing for a great tune that fits snuggly into any part of your life’s soundtrack.
This album is a nice break from some of the ‘all sounds the same’ type of bands that flood the music scene these days. It is a welcome familiar sound for some one like me who is a fan of bands like Hum and Radiohead. The album overall mixes up styles and sound just enough to please just about any one who listens to it and at the same time keeps that sho-gazer sound going.
For Fans Of: Eels, Radiohead, Hum, Her Space Holiday
Top Tracks: All Your Demons, Evil Twin, Hour On The Hour
1. I See You
2. Let’s Not Speak
3. I Want What’s Bad For Me
4. All Your Demons
5. Far Away From Here
6. Evil Twin
7. Hwy 99
9. Someday Maybe
10. Hour On The Hour
11. City Of Devils