REVIEW: City And Colour – “Little Hell”

City And Colour / Little Hell / Dine Alone Records

“So bright, the flames burned in our hearts, that we found each other in the dark,” croons Dallas Green, igniting a 47-minute tirade of passionate distress that opens with a simplistic, familiar tone. Yet unlike anything released under City And Colour, Little Hell is shaded in with different hues of the St. Catherines native’s thoughts. “Fragile Bird” and “Weightless” ring with more of a blues flavor, letting effortless riffs dance around Green’s words when they’re not grasping the frail nature of folk (“Natural Disaster”, “Sorrowing Man”). Though accented by the production, the latter can dishearten those who have gotten used to his acoustic foreplay since The Death Of Me.

Sorting through love and confessions, Green has always been a conflicted poet of sorts as his heart, awaringly, is pleased by sorrow. His vulnerability has poked its head in previous City And Colour hooks and lines, but never has it been this stripped. If “The Girl” represented the butterflies in Green’s heart finally being released, “Northern Wind” is the reflection of the appetizing heartache since then, while darker fits (“The Grand Optimist”) strike with lyrical work that rumbles with more volume. The number which really inflicts emotional damage is Little Hell’s closer. “How can I instill such hope, but be left with none of my own?” Green asks, as he unfolds into your lap before tearing the room apart with a solo thrashing around with rage that can only drip from love.

Download: “Hope For Now”, “Little Hell”


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