Saturday, October 11, 2008

The Rhumb Line

There wouldn’t seem to be a lot of space, musically speaking, between geek rockers Vampire Weekend and Tokyo Police Club. But that’s where you’ll find Ra Ra Riot, who, like the other two bands, just *love* the cello, have listened to all The Strokes’ albums (in their dorms, of course), and have recently released their first full-length record following a couple buzzed-about EPs. And The Rhumb Line, while not quite as triumphant a release as their peers’, is similarly well- crafted, if less energetic. The drowning death of their drummer last year no doubt contributed to the band’s more restrained tone (and, in “Dying Is Fine,” at least one direct commentary on their bandmate’s death). Even their most affecting track, the standout “Oh, La” (which can be heard on JeffMix2008.09.14), has a reserved, almost regal quality. So if Vampire Weekend’s debut is the head of this year’s class, The Rhumb Line is more like the shy, reserved one in the back row. Any questions? B
Ra Ra Riot: Dying Is Fine (mp3) (buy it)
Ra Ra Riot: Winter ’05 (mp3) (buy it)

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