Taking a page from the notebook of larger artists, The National
Rifle has recently decided to forego the traditional way of album
release, for the EP version. And as a follow up to their last EP Wage
Life, the band has given us a new place for fun with Man Full
With the opening track "It's Just Whiskey, Mama" there's
a pleasant mixture of guitars and electronic effects throughout. However,
the layer of vocals on top, almost seem to muck it all up and feels
a bit too forced. In "Love Crack" the vocals fit a little
better than on the previous song and with this one they take the level
down to that of nearly a ballad. But this ballad is high on something
once that gnarling guitar kicks off the chorus. With "Bad News
From The District" you've got an extremely addictive melody that
inevitably causes some foot-tapping right from the get go. For this
number everything fits, from the lyrics, to the back up harmonies
and even the slight hint of piano. The general feeling of the song
puts me back to a version of pop punk that could have been seen around
the 80s or so. The final stop on this newest EP is "Big Units."
The music underneath the vocals is full of promise and includes a
good variety of instruments. However, yet again the method in which
the vocals are done, takes away from the song. They're practically
yelled and show a lack of pitch, which granted can sometimes work.
However with the complexity and precision of music being played, one
would need vocals that are up to the same par. In the end though;
the woodwind additional is quite enjoyable.
For this EP it feels as though the band may have not only taken a
page from the notebook of larger (and previous) artists, but taken
everything literally; it seems verbatim how a pop punk record should
be made, yet perhaps this music was not meant for that genre. There
is a definite showing of talent and hope for a slightly more refined
Check out more
Like this article?
e-mail it to