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EP Review: Lyonn – We’ll Light The Sky

When I started this website I had no idea where it would take me or even if people would read any of the stuff on it but social media can be a wonderful thing. I say that because I’m about to review an EP from a band based in Anaheim California, yeah I’m still finding that a bit weird as well, but here goes.

Based in Anaheim Lyonn are Tyler Gelrud and Attila Yavuzer and this record right here We’ll Light The Sky is their debut EP. This might be the first project from the band as a duo but the Lyonn name has been around for a minute with Tyler performing as a solo artist under that alias and releasing 2 EP’s in the process. That all changed when the two guys met last November and musically everything seemed to fall into place and as a result Lyonn the duo was born the following month.

I’ve had a hard time trying to sum this record up; trying to wrap up my thoughts into a nice little soundbite hasn’t worked so you’ll have to bear with me. The EP feels like two people musically trying to find their feet. There are moments where everything clicks together and the results are brilliant, but then there are others on the flipside where the songs feel like an experiment.  The EP sounds like 2 artists coming together and trying to find out what works for them and what their sound is, which in a way is exactly what the duo are doing but it means that the EP as a standalone piece of work without that narrative feels a bit disjointed.

Opening track and one of the lead singles from the EP Empty Bed absolutely works. This is a pop song which you wouldn’t be surprised to hear on pretty much any mainstream radio station in the world. I like the melodies and the way the sweeping multi-layered production join together, and that along with the one of the crispest, cleanest vocals I have heard in a long time create a really good pop tune. The vocal is powerful and of the highest quality and best of all doesn’t overpower the rest of the track. Like I said above, when everything works it really does work well.

However, the flipside of this is tracks like the EP’s title track We’ll Light The Sky. It’s a painfully slow, atmospheric, ambient pop style track which just doesn’t do a lot for me. I think the main reason that I feel like this is that the track really doesn’t do anything. It meanders around for nearly 3 minutes without doing a great deal and without any kind of focus. There might be people that enjoy this slow and ambient style but I don’t get it in all honesty.

Penultimate track Shining Eyes is a blend (at least on the intro) of a traditional guitar sound and a more electronic style. The song itself sounds like it could have been written and performed by a boyband. That’s not a criticism by the way it’s just the best way that I can think to describe it. It’s a decent little tune, I’m not the target audience in any shape or form but for a straight pop track it’s pretty much bang on the money.

Final track Iceberg sees the duo return to the atmospheric pop style of the title track and I can’t say that it’s really a style that has grown on me. I think the song is simply too long; it seems to hit its peak not long after the 3 minute mark and then just washes around kind of aimlessly for another minute and a half.

Although I have been pretty massively down on 2 of the tracks on this record I don’t believe that this is because Lyonn aren’t talented. I just think that those slow and atmospheric tracks don’t make the most of those talents. Empty Bed is a cracking pop tune and Shining Eyes really isn’t bad either, and for my money that’s where the duo are at their best. I think the next EP will be the one to truly judge the band by as by then they will have found their sound. I want to think that they can pull everything together and put out a really consistent record, they certainly have the ability.

I believe that there is so much more to come from Lyonn but they now have to go out and prove it because I have to judge every project on its own individual merits and We’ll Light The Sky is hugely hit and miss.

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