Punky Philadelphia four-piece Fire In The Radio become monumental on new album that could see them take a huge step towards stardom. Donnie sees if a fuss is worth making.
With Foo Fighters-like driving energy, The Cure-like emotional resonance and R.E.M-like intensity this band are beginning to rise and could well grab themselves a very sizeable fanbase as their style crosses a few musical borders. At the end of the day though you can just class them as a fantastic rock band who have just made a potential classic.
2017’s New Air album gave a huge slap-in-the-face indication of what this band might be capable of and Momuments turns that slap into a full fist. The album gets you right from the very start with the aptly titled “Let’s Get to the Start” a raucous blast of high-energy and low velocity jangly rock n roll.
There is an early 1980’s new wave punk vibe that permeates throughout the album and in some ways you would not be surprised if this was some lost album recorded at that time, despite the production skills of Jesse Gander (Japandroids, White Lung). Comparisons have been made with the above artists and although they are not unfair connections to make they do not tell even half the story. For those around in the late 1990’s you may also get a touch of the My Vitriol about this band and that along with the more illustrious forefathers is no bad thing.
If the opening track didn’t get you then ‘Gravity’ most certainly will. Hooks and melody a-plenty in this three minute ode to ghostly intervention in the darkest times. This is most definitely a hard-rockin’ full on album but there are also more melancholic moments in the form of verses of “This Is My Document” however this is only a brief respite.
“Sunday Cassock” takes a well deserved side-wipe at the Catholic Church and it’s many contradictions and moral vaccum. Not an original stance to take admittedly but always welcome nonetheless.
You could easily find yourself in an aural blur as “Breaking” and “Sing Sang Sung” race along at a furious pace and like the momentum the quality continues right to the very end as album closer “Save Me” is a contender for best track on the album. These guys like to go out with a bang.
The band themselves comment that “we felt challenged to write an album that delivered fully on the promise of our prior effort. We took a Rick Rubin style approach to editing, creating songs that people who placed their trust in us would want to hear. We combined elements from our favourite records, while still attempting to deliver something that was fresh and visceral”. Fair to say they nailed that.
Fire In The Radio are:
Richard Carbone (vocals, guitar)
Jonathan Miller (vocals, guitar)
Adam Caldwell (drums)
Ed Olsen (bass)
Donnie’s Rating: 9/10
Monuments is out now