Steeped in a great tradition of punk, post-hardcore and alt-rock crossover acts such as Brand New, Citizen are are on a steep upward trajectory, set about by the dark, all-consuming energy that pervades second album, Everybody Is Going To Heaven.
EIGTH is full of reverb-heavy single-note lines, shoegaze-worthy ambience and violent powerchord stabs from guitarist Ryland Oehlers, and as the band gear up to support the record with an imminent UK tour, we quizzed Ryland on his beloved Danelectro, newfound love of Strats and why he can't live without a tuner output on his volume pedal…
1. What was your first guitar and when did you get it?
"My first guitar was a sparkly blue Danelectro electric guitar. Not even sure what the model was, but my dad bought it for me for Christmas. I wish I still had it."
2. The building's burning down – what one guitar do you save?
3. Is there a guitar, or piece of gear, that you regret letting go?
"Definitely my Danelectro, just for the sentimental value."
4. And what's the next piece of gear you'd like to acquire?
"A Teenage Engineering OP-1, which is a synth/workstation."
5. Is there an aspect of guitar playing that you'd like to be better at?
"More into the theory of it. I know chords and keys and the simple scales, but not as much as I should, haha - I basically just play by ear."
6. When did you last practise and what did you play?
"I last practised yesterday. I recently obtained a Fender Strat and it's my first one. I'm not used to the five pickup switches, so I've been riffing around with all of them figuring out the tones and what I like. Also been obsessed with the chorus pedal I've obtained and I haven't been able to turn it off."
7. If you could have a guitar lesson from one guitarist, dead or alive, who would it be?
"Rivers Cuomo or Kurt Cobain."
8. What item of gear would you take with you to a desert island?
"Strat and Twin."
9. What's the worst thing that's ever happened to you onstage?
"That feeling when you think your gear took a shit and you try to figure it out for a whole song, and then realise that your tuner pedal was on. The reason I bought a volume pedal with a tuner input, haha!"
10. What advice would you give your younger self about playing the guitar?
"Practise more. Let your guitar teacher father give you more guitar lessons instead of being too stubborn and only wanting to learn on your own."
Civilian tour the UK in August - full dates are below.
Monday 22 August - Clwb Ifor Bach, Cardiff
Tuesday 23 August - Joiners, Southampton
Wednesday 24 August - Sticky Mikes Frog Bar, Brighton
Thursday 25 August - The Lexington, London
Friday 26-28 August - Reading and Leeds Festivals