[$5 // Edition of 30 // https://4fctrl.bandcamp.com/album/4-007-cycles]
My second full Logan Archer cassette experience comes with "Cycles" and it isn't quite the same as the first as this time there are vocals and more of the song structures I am used to from when I first heard Logan Archer on that 4! mixed tape. It does begin instrumentally though, with a Smashing Pumpkins type of feel to it that is ambient and perhaps like a lullaby even.
When the singing comes in, Logan Archer finds himself somewhere between the greats and usual suspects I like to pull from my reference desk: The Get Up Kids, Daniel Johnston, EFS and Ben Kweller. And it might not be that his bedroom recordings sound exactly like any of these other artists specifically, it's just that they had the biggest impact on me growing up and so I can hear them coming out that much more easily with music this good.
On Side B though, we come into something melodic that has an almost full band feel to it and reminds me of The Weakerthans. After an instrumental guitar number, "Cycles" comes to a close on a song about heart break that has that confessional feel to it that everyone should be able to relate to because the author doesn't seem to worry about how to make it rhyme but rather focuses on peeling back layers of their own skin.
And that might be one of the biggest things about "Cycles"- is that it just feels so personal. It's not that he's necessarily confessing a secret to you, but it just feels like a conversation two people who know each other rather well (friends?) might share. And I've always related cassettes with being the most personal form of media because they were the first thing people would hand to me at shows and say "Listen to my demo?" before you could burn onto compact discs.
I'm extremely glad that I waited until "Cycles" was on cassette before listening to it because it truly does give you the best experience. There is just something personal about a cassette and this music fits it like a glove. But make no mistake, Logan Archer is not continuing what others have started or following in their footsteps-- he is creating his own unique path.