Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Kye Alfred Hillig -- Fossil

Kye Alfred Hillig has led a colorful life. Having worked among some of the most morbid aspects of life (and death) as a trauma cleanup specialist, working in institutes for the mentally ill, and a funeral parlor attendant, it's no wonder that Fossil is a bit dark. The album opens with a gorgeous hymn in "Impotent Summer":

Machine gun the carolers and a Happy New Year
The Nile once carried a baby through here
Now the bachelor’s short arms keep the top shelf away
O, impotent Summer, what a glorious hang 

It's that weird snark that drew me into the album. Fossil covers a lot of ground: lyrically, it's quite dense and I'm grateful to Hillig for providing the lyrics on Bandcamp. Musically, Hillig ranges restlessly from folk to electronica to 80s pop. From what I can tease out of the words, the album seems to center on Hillig's recollections of his sixteenth summer -- the intensity and isolation of youth, the passion and tragedies when they go unfulfilled.

Ultimately, Fossil is full of love. "Social Work" powerfully demands change where none is forthcoming. "Rainbow Lake" fondly recalls teenage love. My favorite song, "Somewhere Over the Rainbow Too Many Times" is one of my favorite hopeful songs, and I feel it's one I could return to many times in the future:

Of course I’ve been divorced
But betting on a losing horse don’t make you blind
Humanity as far as the eye can see
Dead faces staring into screens
Trying to crawl towards the light

And there’s nothing wrong with feeling right
With getting along or bringing this world a little light
But I’ve heard ‘Somewhere Over The Rainbow’ one too many times

The album is quite different from what usually gets featured here, but I think it's worth your time. Fossil digs deep into the nooks and crannies you might ignore and reminds you to pay a little more attention from now on.

Kye Alfred Hillig -- Official, Facebook, Bandcamp

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