Friday, 28 September 2012

Flynndie Reviews: Blog #31 - The Rialto Burns - Learning to Fight

Written 28th September 2012

The Rialto Burns – Learning to Fight

The Band: Adam (vocals), Pottsy (bass), Alex and Cogsy (guitars), Shaun (drums)

So today’s album review comes from a band that someone kindly recommended on Twitter after which I decided to go out and look up a few of their tracks, and after hearing their most recent single (at the time) on the band’s website, ‘While you Sleep’, I immediately thought that the track sounded great and showed some potential.  I then found some more tracks on YouTube ‘Radiate’ and ‘For the Asking’ and I quickly found myself hooked on this band’s instant style and sound. “So who is this band?” I hear you ask (knowing full well you already know from the review title!) and the answer of course is Liverpool’s own ‘The Rialto Burns’ and today’s review covers the band’s debut album ‘Learning to Fight’ where I hope to expose more of the instant style and sound of the band that I hinted on earlier.

Round 1…..FIGHT!!!

1. Release
2. While you Sleep
3. For the Asking
4. Show me your Colours
5. Back to Life
6. Cold Hands
7. Learning to Fight
8. Radiate
9. Fingers and Thumbs
10. Slow/Fade
11. While you Sleep (Part II)

Initially opening, with buzzing, razor-sharp guitars things get underway with opening track ‘Release’ and we get our first taste of Adam’s deep, dark vocals which immediately creates somewhat more of a unique sound and style for the band. The track steadily ebbs and flows, between its gentle bass riff back to the buzzing guitars from its initial opening and keeps constantly flirting between the two. With gentle synths before an incredibly catchy, high-pitched guitar riff that accelerates the track along, ‘While you Sleep’ is a very instant Indie track, with lyrics “It takes a touch of innocence/To gain perspective on your sins”. The track constantly builds throughout but it’s the main opening riff that for me gives this track potential future ‘Goal of the Month’ backing music on Match of the Day, which is a high accolade for any band to achieve in my book! ‘For the Asking’ features high-pitched guitars blending with deep, flowing bass creating quite a chiselled sound on the track while lyrics flow “Put it on the ground/Just for the asking/I got the blues/You got the blues”, while solo guitar riffs continue to build constantly throughout the track.

Opening with a very electronic synth feel to it and a very much 80’s influenced guitar sound ‘Show me your Colours’ really does have quite a retro feel to it, with its melody and rhythm giving it much of an 80’s U2 feel about it in my opinion but with a modern take with the style of vocals and synths used throughout. The track coasts along blending its retro mix of guitar, bass and synths with a confident, carefree swagger all about it, before the track signs off with high-pitched, building synths, something you don’t see much on modern Indie albums these days but done to great effect here. Deep, heavy bass sets the early tone for fifth track ‘Back to Life’ and these continue while short, sharp guitar riffs dig and interject their way into the track nicely. “I walk these streets tonight\With a little romance in my life” vocals, being interspersed by still constant deep bass and guitars that are now slowly taking more control of the track as it goes along, it’s another track that still retains a bit of a retro feel for me and builds constantly, as quite a few tracks on this album do, finishing with repeated “I’m a sucker for love/I’m a sucker for love and it’s killing me”. ‘Cold Hands’ follows next and enters with a fast, sharp guitars riff pulling the track along, before we reach a brilliant crescendo of a chorus “I want you falling at my feet/Falling on me now/Falling from the sky” it works really well in context of the track and you soon find yourself humming along to it intentionally or not, as this track has a sense of a forlorn urgency about it throughout. Title-track ‘Learning to Fight’ is a particular percussion-driven track, with a repeated quick drum rhythm at the very heart of the track throughout, we again have softly-sung, deliberately slow vocals here really creating a brooding atmosphere for the song overall. The track features a nice guitar solo coupled with synths midway through to nice effect but overall despite the upbeat percussion this is quite a slow-burner of a track but very much deliberately so, building in its impact and atmosphere that it creates.

“Radiate my soul/In this world so cold” are the distinct opening vocals from ‘Radiate’, as guitars are again steadily, constantly building to another fast and urgent chorus. This was another very instant type of Indie track for me when I first heard it and a track I’m still enjoying on repeated listens; it’s pretty much a well-written, easily accessible Indie-pop song and is all the better for it in my opinion. Gentle, twinkling synths against cutting guitars build the basis of the melody for ‘Fingers and Thumbs’, another slower, more deliberate track here by the band before one of my favourite tracks on the album ‘Slow/Fade’. With an excellent synth slide guitar effect backed by a brilliant guitar riff, the track then eases as vocals from Adam depict an individual’s fiery characteristics, before being re-joined by the excellent synth and guitar, it’s a very pleasant, easy-listening track for the listener and one I liked instantly. The album closes with ‘While you Sleep (Part II) and this really is the ‘darker’ side of the earlier track on the album, with really brooding guitar and synth effects and no-nonsense percussion throughout, it really puts the band’s closing statement on the album and captures the complete style of the band as a whole.

So, overall what we have here is decent debut album with a band really defining their own unique sound, really capturing dark, edgy, brooding tracks with an emphasis on short catchy guitar riffs duelling with synth effects. If I could make a comparison to their sound it would be somewhat of a cross between The White Lies and ‘forgotten’ Indie band The Bravery, with certainly a hint of 80’s era U2 thrown in there as well in my opinion, it’s a very distinct sound the band produce here! I’ve been listening to the album for some time now and it’s certainly a grower with each listen and I’m going to give ‘Learning to Fight’ 8 punch-bags out of 10 here. I think it will be interesting to see how the band follow up this album and it actually shouldn’t be too long to wait now with the band already releasing the video to their next single ‘Hibernation’ which you can also see below, with a follow-up album due out soon, I currently have The Rialto Burns as “one to watch” in my book right now!

Knocked Out

Track 2 ‘While you Sleep’

Track 3 ‘For the Asking’

Track 8 ‘Radiate’

New single ‘Hibernation’

Band website:

No comments:

Post a Comment