Citalopramic Oceans Ep Review
Hannah Petch / 09-09-2018
Michael Upton is an acoustic artist from the Nottingham/Derby area. He has just released his new five track EP Citalopramic Oceans and it is packed full of rich and earthy vocals. Combining themes of the body and nature, emphasised through the title of the EP and the lyrics, Upton brings us upbeat acoustic tracks with a deeply pained subtext behind them.
Upton is a highly skilled guitarist and the rich tones in his voice are a delight to listen to, however the lyrics pack a huge emotional punch. The title of the EP, Citalopramic Oceans, leaves a lot to unpack. Citalopram is an anti-depressant drug, and the themes of depression and the overwhelming power of nature run throughout the EP.
The first track, titled Collapsed Lung, sets the tone of the EP with lyrics such as “My left side has died” and “I’m numb with the feeling that I’m being erased”. The rich and earthy tones of Upton’s voice compliment the anguished subtext and the themes that run throughout. In fact, every track has cleverly penned lyrics that reinforce these motifs. The track System opens with the lyric “bathe my thoughts in cyanide” and goes on to include lyrics such as “send me pills to put me under”, “numb, my mind, switch it off at the mains” and “drowning in citalopramic oceans”. The theme of depression is rife, however there is still something quite pleasant about listening to these tracks. Despite the anguished and rather depressing undertones, the tracks themselves have a good pace and tempo to them, Upton’s impressive guitar skills make the tracks enjoyable to listen to, and his voice is so incredibly rich and strong that you forget about the rather troubling lyrics.
There is also a real narrative that moves along throughout the EP. The first track, Collapsed Lung, uses the metaphor of a decaying lung to represent the decay and eventual break up of a relationship. As we move through the EP the tracks present shades of light and dark culminating in the final track; Perfect Silence. This track opens with a gentle guitar instrumental and has a much slower pace to it, before building up into a crescendo towards the end. The lyrics in this track, “our times of perfect silence, our skin makes more sense than science” reflect another sort of relationship giving the narrative a cyclical structure
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