Album Review: Saintseneca – Pillar of Na

Saintseneca

Pillar of Na

ANTI- Records 

Ohio’s Saintseneca bring their fourth full length LP in Pillar of Na, released on ANTI- Records, it’s the brainchild of frontman Zac Little, and produced by Bright Eyes’ Mike Mogis who’s other notable production workings include; First Aid Kit, Alessi’s Arc, and Rlio Kiley.

From the intro Circle Hymn you’d be forgiven in thinking it’s the latest instalment from Alt-J, a 47-second intriguing interlude of a preaching harmony, overlaid by a penetrating poetic lead vocal. 

Although comparisons to others are put to bed from this point, a creative convolution carves through the soul of the record bearing it difficult to categorise in the best possible way. The album takes several listens to fathom, each bringing its own idiosyncrasies and emotion.

The genre crossing throughout the record dips into alt-folk, art-rock, elements of Celtic renaissance, symphonic classical, and just really good pop. This, intertwined with clever wordplay, and some hauntingly lyrical songwriting is captivating in each of the 10 tracks.

In it’s entirety, Pillar of Na has the attributes of being one of the most multi layered, and multi dimensional albums in a long while. The intricate tonalities, genre, and time-looping textural ambiguity are complex yet compelling which makes the record work so well.

Highlights include; Ladder to the Sun, evocatively written with jangly guitar riffs. Denarius is a modern classical gem with heartbreaking strings arrangements.

Frostbiter is the stand out track of the album, a cinematic aura bleeds through the structured reminiscing writing, with a stunning falsetto chorus and slicing synths.

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