Bedbug – “if i got smaller grew wings and flew away for good”
Released October 3rd, 2016
*Out of 5
Bedbug, the Boston-based bedroom pop project created by artist Dylan Citron, released their new album, titled if i got smaller grew wings and flew away for good, on October 3rd. The album—recorded through Northeastern’s student-run record label Green Line Records—is Bedbug’s longest release to date, a full-length LP with thirteen songs. Despite having so many tracks, it’s a pretty short album, with several of the songs clocking in under three minutes, and a couple under two. The brevity of these songs is just one of the many factors that contribute to the album’s dreamlike, surreal tone.
if i got smaller is mellow—full of soft, gentle sounds that would be easy to fall asleep listening to, or could act as a soundtrack as you lie awake in bed, pondering. It relies primarily on a blend of acoustic and electronic sounds, combining guitar and synthesizer. It’s a lo-fi recording, giving it a vintage vibe reminiscent of an old record. The album is incredibly cohesive, each song blending effortlessly into the next, to the extent that it sometimes feels repetitive. Nevertheless, if i got smaller refuses to follow conventions. Despite its brevity, many of the songs are also heavily instrumental and feature brief moments of lyrical content, occasionally incorporating more experimental elements like spoken voices. A few songs, such as “i recorded this last night when you were sleeping <3,” “animal crossing diary entries <3,” and “if i got smaller grew wings and flew away for good, i’d take you with me” hardly feature any vocals at all. The unusual stylistic use of lyrics and song lengths are a result of the lack of a typical verse-chorus-verse formula, demonstrating how Bedbug would rather continue on with new lines than repeat old ones.
Bedbug’s use of lyrics is unusual, and the lyrics themselves are rather strange. The album features song titles like “skunkbears <3,” “i looked outside, it was hailing cactus needles <3,” and “milkbeans <3,” which are representative of the overall random nature of the songs. Many of the lyrics read like a cross between abstract poetry and haphazard rambling. At times this causes the songs to feel overly stylistic, bordering on pointless. However, the album is generally successful in conveying the conflict and confusion associated with youthful emotions. In fact, youth is one of the major themes throughout the album, along with love, happiness, and beauty. The album’s overall message is best summed up with lyrics from the second track, “boy songs // love songs <3”:
“i dont wanna write boy songs
or love songs
i just wanna write about being young
or the rain falls and hits the ground in a stutter but the sunshines
its time to write these feelings down”
Although the album can seem overly mellow and strange, if i got smaller grew wings and flew away for good’s quirkiness is what makes it great. You may occasionally find yourself wishing for the infectious beats and catchy riffs of more mainstream music, but this unique record, equally suited to lazy rainy days and late night contemplation, is definitely worth a listen. 3.5/5.