19 Sep 2013

The Citradels "Our Lord's Secret Service" Review

Melbourne's neo-psych / drone specialists are back with their second full length this year, and while this sort of workload would normally signpost a drop in quality, it sounds like the Citradels have learned a whole lot of studio tricks since January's "Psychotic Syndrone" (great name), and upped their songwriting game considerably too, resulting in probably the finest full length psychedelic rock album I've heard come out of Australia this year (and that includes Pond's "Hobo Rocket").
It all starts innocuously enough with "Technicolor Nightmare"s sonorous vocals and lightly drone soaked acoustic guitar strums, but by the end of the track the drone has conquered all, after battling it out with a menacing, massed chorus of disembodied voices - very much diabolus in musica.
Effortlessly combining the droning rock 'n' roll ethos of the Velvet Underground with a distinctly British shoegaze sensibility (I hear a whole lot of Ride here, which can only be a very, very good thing indeed), and just a dash of their own Antipodean heritage, "Our Lord's Secret Service" is a consistently adventurous, slowburn of an album that pays dividends for those willing to pay return visits, quickly graduating from "I quite like this", to "this is very good" to "hell , this is great" for this listener.
And to those who are finding that there's a little too much of this drone psych stuff coming out at the moment, rest assured this rests near the very top of the heap, and isn't scared to traverse other terrains too, with tracks like "Colours" entering the realm of slow motion pop-psych and showing a mastery of that form too.

Available as a Name Your Price download from their Bandcamp page here, with a vinyl release coming soon from Psyche Ward.


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