Little Heart's Ease

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Heather Phares
On Little Heart's Ease, their third album and first for Rough Trade, Royal City continues in the direction of Alone at the Microphone but opts for a fuller, cleaner, more polished sound. At times, more polished means too polished: occasionally, Aaron Riches' vocals sound a little airless, and the album doesn't feature as much unique instrumentation as Alone at the Microphone did. However, Little Heart's Ease does deliver more of the dark but oddly jaunty songwriting that made Royal City's previous album noteworthy: Riches can still deliver lyrics like "let my tongue rot in my mouth" as sweetly as a lullaby. But Riches' words are darker than his music -- although the ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Heather Phares
On Little Heart's Ease, their third album and first for Rough Trade, Royal City continues in the direction of Alone at the Microphone but opts for a fuller, cleaner, more polished sound. At times, more polished means too polished: occasionally, Aaron Riches' vocals sound a little airless, and the album doesn't feature as much unique instrumentation as Alone at the Microphone did. However, Little Heart's Ease does deliver more of the dark but oddly jaunty songwriting that made Royal City's previous album noteworthy: Riches can still deliver lyrics like "let my tongue rot in my mouth" as sweetly as a lullaby. But Riches' words are darker than his music -- although the comparisons to Smog, Damien Jurado, and Will Oldham's many incarnations aren't inaccurate Oldham fans will particularly like the epic "Enemy", Royal City crafts a lighter, somewhat sweeter kind of indie-country-rock gloom. And, with Little Heart's Ease's cleaner, fuller sound, Riches and company end up sounding less like their contemporaries and more like Neil Young, Gram Parsons, Sweetheart of the Rodeo-era Byrds, and the other artists who inspired alt-country in the first place. This classicist sound reaches its peak on the engaging "Can't You," which recalls Dylan right down to its climactic swell of harmonicas. As good as the band is at revitalizing the past, Royal City is at its best when it sounds distinctly modern; the spare percussion and wiry guitars of "Count the Days" crackle with a quiet energy, and the dreamy, droning "O Beauty" sounds similarly fresh. Interestingly, the strongest moments on Little Heart's Ease tend to be the subtlest; songs such as "Ain't That the Way" arrive with little fanfare, but they definitely make an impact. Alone at the Microphone might still be Royal City's most immediate work, but the striking restraint of the best moments on Little Heart's Ease is no less captivating.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 1/25/2005
  • Label: Rough Trade Us
  • UPC: 021823003726
  • Catalog Number: 30037

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Royal City Primary Artist
Bob Wiseman Track Performer
Simon Osborne Group Member
Peggy King Vocals
Lonnie James Group Member
Tyler Clark Burke Vocals
Bryan Webb Vocals
Steve Lambke Vocals
Dallas Wehrle Vocals
Joel Gibb Vocals
Reg Vermue Vocals
Jim Guthrie Group Member
Katja Canini Vocals
Gavin Gardiner Vocals
Pete Gazendam Vocals
James Heidenbrecht Track Performer
Molly Jenney Vocals
Vish Khanna Vocals
Devon Knowles Vocals
Nathan Lawr Track Performer
Michelle Lobkowicz Vocals
Lisa Moran Vocals
Nathan Pallett Track Performer
Aaron Riches Group Member
Kristy Simpson Vocals
Justin Stayshyn Vocals
Doug Tielli Track Performer
Technical Credits
Jeff Elliott Mastering
Royal City Composer
Tyler Clark Burke Artwork
Andy Magoffin Engineer
James Heidenbricht Engineer
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