Prior to this release, Citizen hadn’t put out a full-length release since 2017, but the era that the band started in 2017 is one that is very cherished. “As You Please” added to the wondrous discography of Citizen, and the addition of “Life in Your Glass World” furthers the progression and ever-evolving works that Citizen provides to the music industry.
This record, from the first listen, blasts the Citizen foundation that audiences love and cherish. This is a fantastic initial reaction for an album because it shows that the band is going to stay consistent, while evolving their approach to their own characteristic sound.
The Citizen brand is stamped with grunge-based instrumentals, witty-lyrical lines that hit the soul, striking choruses, and enough electronics and synthesizer to create unique grooves for each selection. The one portion of this album that stands out to me when comparing it to their discography is how they are able to craft a similar shaped record- with clear highs and lows, fast and slows, and brights and darks, and yet, the album still feels refreshing, innovating, and completely new.
The contrast of a Citizen album is the where the ticket is. One moment, Citizen will provide heightened instrumentals that feel like they are spanning from ear to ear in intensity, and the next second, the instrumentation drops to a minimal state to emphasize the intriguing lyrical line. Their attention to detail and strategic writing is unmatched. The contrast happens moving from track to track but also within most selections on the make. A great example of this is the initial song “Death Dance Approximately,” which brings the record to an exciting open.
A portion of the record that keeps the momentum continually pushing forward is the band’s attention to the off-beats. The band creates a pocket, where their instrumentals and melodies lock into, but a lot of the time, accompanying either the chorus or interlude material, the percussion part falls on the off-beat. This generates an environment that gets the toe tapping and allows for intricate instrumental pieces to occur overtop.
As a Citizen fan, I was happy to see their evolution felt natural, and that this record feels as if Citizen is just stopping in to say “Hello” in 2021 to let everyone know they still got it.
I am giving this record a 4.5 out of 5 stars.
*”Life in Your Glass World” was released on March 26th, 2021 through Run for Cover Records.