The National Rifle

Almost Endless

Written by: PP on 14/07/2013 19:49:42

On debut album "Almost Endless", The National Rifle continue where they left off with the EPs, writing stadium sized indie rock soundscapes that echo in a grand arrangements of synths and open-ended riffs, lead by fluffy, feather-like male vocals that float above the whole soundscape. Occasionally, like on "Glass Line", soft female vocals are also introduced to the mix, this track being particularly catchy once it picks up in a sudden tempo change after the sparkling verses. The whole expression brings into mind The Killers, and is that Kraftwerk influence I hear in those 80s styled synth melodies on a few songs, no? Particularly album highlight "So Real" sounds like that might well be the case.

Generally said, The National Rifle are aiming high with "Almost Endless". These soundscapes wouldn't sound out-of-place even at the largest stages, because of the way they are designed to spread through open areas into all directions. On the contrary, hearing songs this big in small club venues should feel rather weird, especially because the title track even has some of the characteristic arena-stage echo attached to its guitars from the beginning. More importantly, their songwriting has never been better than is the case here. When you can be compared to Coldplay and Band Of Horses you can pretty much assume to be on the right track, especially because many tracks also have radio potential without the negative connotation that normally comes with that reference.

What's most interesting about "Almost Endless" though is how it combines elements from 80s, 90s and 2000s together into a fusion sound that doesn't sound dated despite reaching far back in time for inspiration. The gloomy space rock synths on "So Real", for instance, fit in perfectly with the big chorus that takes over alongside a thick bass rhythm, where guitars are left in a backing role. Kraftwerk, instrumental bands Maserati and perhaps even Zombi are the bands that come into mind here. Then on the opposing end of spectrum you have tracks like "Visuals", which are guitar-driven and fall more naturally into the standard indie rock mold. In other words, "Almost Endless" is a versatile album that explores every part of the fence separating classic 80s oriented synth music and modern stadium sized indie rock, a great listen overall.

Download: Coke Beat, Glass Line, Almost Endless, So Real
For the fans of: The Killers, Coldplay, Band Of Horses, Maserati and Zombi with vocals, New Order
Listen: Facebook

Release date 19.01.2013

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