The Rifles – ‘None The Wiser’

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For the past decade or so The Rifles have been plodding away, doing their mod (The Jam in particular) influenced indie thing and picking up a loyal fan base along the way. Since their formation in 2004, three albums have been released – debut No Love Lost in 2006 introduced the quartet’s aforementioned style, follow up The Great Escape did much the same while 2011’s Freedom Run shifted towards more grandiose, orchestral pop in places.

It’s been far from plain sailing, having to overcome financial problems, rows with banks and enforce line-up changes. Yet a full decade since their first gig and eight years on from their debut, The Rifles are still with us when many of the 2006 vintage are long since gone. With the original line-up back in place following the return of bassist Robert Pyne and drummer Grant Marsh to the fold alongside Joel Stoker and Lucas Crowther, The Rifles have resurrected their early sound, energy and enthusiasm.

There is an abundance of upbeat, punchy melodies and spiky guitars, riffs and hooks you could hang your hat on. It feels as though the band have just reverted back to where their strengths always lay and embraced them. The incessantly catchy ‘Minute Mile’ leads the super-charged opening, with the bouncy two minute injection of indie power pop of ‘Heebie Jeebies’ and ‘Go Lucky’ continues the momentum, and the latter nodding towards their fondness for The Jam. ‘All I Need’, ‘You Win Some’ and ‘The Hardest Place To’ offer a less exuberant side to their personality; preferring to fill the air with some subtle but energetic strumming, spritely drumbeats and luscious harmonies and melodies. While the albums finest moment ‘Shoot From The Lip’, isn’t too far removed from the catchy, heartfelt, quirky pop of Pete & The Pirates.

While it’s unclear if None The Wiser will be enough for The Rifles to transform their cult status; this is highly enjoyable, infectious, tight and melodic indie, done ever so well, and you know what? Sometimes that it’s quite enough.

Video: The Rifles – Sweetest Thing

Featuring one Paul Weller on guitar, ‘Sweetest Thing’ is the second single to be taken from The Rifles excellent third album ‘Freedom Run’. 

This hugely uplifting single is one of many sumptuous slices of indie from a record which sees the band embrace a newly smoothed out production style and luscious sound with enormous results. 

‘Sweetest Thing’ is out on January 16th 2012.

The Rifles – Freedom Run

The Rifles have returned with their long awaited third album, Freedom Run. It sees them transform the spiky early Jam-influenced sounds of their previous two albums, to a much richer, fuller and more varied sound.

While there is still a nod to mod and ’60s sound, their rough and ready street-wise attitude has been traded for sweeping, soft-centred indie. The album boasts a smart collection of overwhelmingly uplifting, positive and catchy songs full of bright harmonies and even brighter guitars.

This newly smoothed out production style and luscious sound is brought to life with ‘Sweetest Thing’, ‘Tangled Up In Love’ and ‘Coming Home’, three sumptuous slices of indie. It would be difficult task to seek out a more captivating song in 2011 than country tinged ‘Love Is The Key’. This is an album smothered in the ’60s influences with elements of The Kinks, Bob Dylan and John Lennon being found throughout, but, most obviously on ‘Eveline’, ‘Nothing Matters’ and ‘Falling’.

The rejigged line-up appears to have done them no harm at all. If their debut No Love Lost was rough and ready, Great Escape more polished, well then Freedom Run sees them embracing their sweet, shimmering indie-selves in full. A life changing masterpiece it is certainly is not, but, give it half a chance and it’s sheer sweetness will seduce you.

The Rifles – Love Is They Key

The Rifles – Coming Home

Download: The Rifles – Coming Home

The Rifles returned a few weeks back with ‘Tangled Up In Love’, their first single from forthcoming album Freedom Run.

The band have now made a second track, ‘Coming Home’ available as a free download. This latest taster is another sumptuous slice of indie, jammed with killer hooks, heavenly harmonies and melodies. 

It sounds like the smoothed out the production style and polished sound is here to stay but it seems the recent changes in personnel have done them no harm at all. 

Freedom Run will be released September 19th.

Mp3: The Rifles – Coming Home [audio http://www.thisfeeling.co.uk/download/10736-The-Rifles—Coming-Home.mp3] via This Feeling

The Rifles return w/ ‘Tangled Up In Love’

The Rifles have returned with the first single ‘Tangled Up In Love’ taken from new album Freedom Run.

The newly adjusted Mod revivalists seem to smoothed out the production style with a more polished sound than before, the familiar guitars and infectious melodies remain but are topped off with a luscious string riff. 

Their previous two albums, No Love Lost and Great Escape, were great so a lot is to be expected from this, their third offering.

Both ‘Tangled Up In Love’ and album Freedom Run will be released in September.

The Rifles – Tangles Up In Love