With a new-found swagger and sound, 'Keep It Together' is the fourth studio album from Riflebirds.
Written within the throes of the pandemic, Melbourne rock’n’rollers Riflebirds have unleashed their new full-length album, delivering their unique brand of guitar and keyboard-driven rock and energy-charged sounds in new and exciting ways.
Following the release of their 2020 live album – Live At The Espy, the band have broken open this new chapter with confidence and catapulted right back into our music-loving hearts with Keep It Together, released on Friday, November 12.
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Since making their debut in 2015 with Detours & Collisions, Riflebirds have gone from strength to strength, releasing critically-acclaimed follow-ups World Feels Wide (2016) and Ain’t Ever Going Home (2018) as well as playing at some of the best-known live music venues and festivals in Australia.
Marking their fourth studio album, the highly anticipated record Keep It Together features previously shared tracks ‘Debra’, ‘I Don’t Wanna Go To Berrigan’ and ‘Stagger Swagger’, refining their eclectic, riff-driven rock sound.
Recorded at Soundpark Recording and Rehearsals, the album as a whole is a testament to the band’s growth over the last few years, boasting electrifying riffs, infectious melodies
An album is stuffed with anthemic rock ’n’ roll – the kind that would evoke a sway out of even the least rhythmically inclined. The band take their signature style to another level with this release, introducing a new-found swagger and sound.
With opening track and previously released single ‘Debra’, Riflebirds kicks it off with an energetic, raw and rollicking riff-driven banger that really reflects the energy of the band’s renowned live performances, mixing in some serious anthemic 70s hazy rock influence for good measure. Fans of ‘Elephant’ by Tame Impala will be drawn to this one.
Like a breath of fresh air, ‘Empty Like the Nullarbor’ floats and shimmies its way into your heart and makes you want to listen again and again. Embracing their iconic guitar and piano-driven sound fuelled by foot-thudding percussion, this track is truly infectious and is given an edge by the pungency of the shimmering piano chords.
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Effortlessly moving between rock styles, Riflebirds prove their one of the very best and most adventurous rock bands on the planet. Rock and roll delivered with swagger is such a buzz and ‘Stagger Swagger’ is rich with awesome percussion and distinguishable fuzz. Driven by electrifying rock n roll energy, the confident, distinctively gritty vocals sit pretty at the forefront of this track with a memorable melody that you’ll have in your head long after the song’s finished.
Disintegrating the boundaries of genre, ‘I Don’t Wanna Go To Berrigan’ then sees the band chasing a different sound, unleashing a reggae-tinged chorus that’ll instantly burrow its way into your brain. The elements of swirling guitar, layers of alluring vocals, a driving rhythm section and building drums show how the band manipulate genre into their own sound, bound only by their love for electrifying, hip-shaking melodies and grooves.
The title track ‘Keep It Together’ is a tour de force, propelled by sun-soaked cycling piano and ambitious indie-rock riffs. Evoking a wistful nostalgia, this track is an ingenious balance of up-tempo beats, fuzzy grooves and a deeper undertone, with touching lyrics (“Keep it together man, the light is on the way, with your spirits high, ride it out like a wave”).
Riflebirds plunge into jam-band territory many times throughout the album, reminding you just why they’ve earned themselves a reputation as one of the finest live acts around.
Stretching and manipulating their signature sound as the album progresses, by the time ‘Everything’s Alright’ plays, you will be gasping for air wondering what the hell kind of journey you just embarked on, only to be hit with the final track ‘The Past Keeps Knocking At My Door’ – the longest of the entire album, clocking in at just over six minutes. Flexing the band’s impeccable songwriting abilities more than ever, the psychedelic rock single is relentless, experimenting with jazz-driven drumming, indie-electronic sound pallets and slow-burning simmering vocals, which flow along, almost spoken.
A band at the peak of their creative and musical prowess, Keep It Together is a diverse and eclectic album and covers enough ground to solidify Riflebirds’ status as a modern-day rock’n’roll genius.
Having delivered arguably their most mature and nuanced work to date, Riflebirds is well and truly riding a steep, upward trajectory that has continued for an astonishing period of time.
Listen to ‘Keep It Together’ below. To show your support, buy vinyl, CDs or downloads from Bandcamp here.