[sic] Magazine

City Rain – This I Will Remember

It was just over a year ago when I reviewed City Rain’s ‘Light Turned On’; a compelling mix of melodic electronic music, acoustic guitars and samples. Created by Philadelphia’s Ben Runyan, the artist created admirably warm instrumental music to provide comfort in the wee small hours. ‘This I Will Remember’ runs along a similar theme and is another record which took its time to grow on me.

An acoustic guitar is intertwined with vintage techno for the somewhat self-deprecating ‘Wow That Was Boring’. It’s a device which Runyan is fond of repeating throughout and since he excels at it, he would be mad to stop. His approach to melody is also well calculated with inventive arrangements. Whilst so many of his contemporaries seem to be trying to “out-glitch” each other, Runyan keeps things minimal and uncluttered and his music is all the better for it.

‘Try To Understand’ and the moody ‘Skyscraper’ are superbly constructed, ‘Buon Giorno Sleepasaur’ reminded me of Junior Boys minus the vocals and Parts 1 and 2 of the title track capture the essence of inner city melancholia. Even lesser efforts like the robotic disco of ‘Have Them Come Wait’ are fun to listen to.

With ‘This I Will Remember’, Runyan has proved that his last release was no fluke. Runyan won’t be the first to emulate nocturnal loneliness via the medium of electronica but rarely has this been evoked in such a seamless and flab-free way.



For more from Jon, please read his ‘zine Leonards Lair