steering clear of the mainstream
since 2001

june 2010

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info opinion

The National Rifle

"Man Full of Trouble" EP


Genre: pop-punk, indie rock

Philadelphia, PA

November 2009

This Philly fourpiece wear their indie rock and pop-punk influences on their sleeves (or at least their press release), and while they've got spirit on their side, their songs lack longevity. The trouble is that they short-sightedly put energy ahead of song writing. A main offender is "It's Just Whiskey, Mama," which is all energy and no hooks, continuing on for vastly too long given its dearth of content. Better results are seen on saxophone-ornamented "Love Crack" and ska-tinged "I Think I Have a Tumor," but they are still burdened by a lack of effective melody. Taken together, The National Rifle is like the prototypical party band: they're enthusiastic and indecorous enough for a good ol' barn-hop, but when you bring home their self-released CD, the magic quickly runs dry. Sorry, dudes.

the national rifle's myspace

Matt Shimmer

[Vitals: 5 tracks, distributed by the band, released 2009]