Radio Fallout - "Vox E Tenebris" CD Review ~ BrooklynRocks: NYC Music Blog

Friday, July 13, 2012

Radio Fallout - "Vox E Tenebris" CD Review

Radio Fallout - 'Vox E Tenebris' CD Review
Austin, TX trio Radio Fallout are releasing their debut full length, Vox E Tenebris, next month and the forthcoming disc is an intriguing mix of guitar-based roots-rock (with shades of Tom Petty and the BoDeans) and 90’s (Nirvana-flavored) grunge. The band has been getting some buzz with shows at SXSW these last two years and this new disc should help push Radio Fallout into the public eye.

Most of Radio Fallout’s songs follow a Nirvana-style verse-chorus-verse structure. The disc opens with “I Want to be Alright”, where driving melodic guitar riffs and sing-along choruses hide that this is a breakup song. The energy builds on the next two songs – “Lux E Tenebris” and “Falling In” – and these are two of the disc’s strongest tracks. On these songs, Radio Fallout reach beyond the ‘traditional’ v-c-v pop song structure with some extremely tight interplay between the band members. “Lux E Tenebris” is driven by intertwined guitar riffs and melodic bass lines and builds up a tightly layered wall of sound before falling back to a clean guitar riff. “Falling In” is driven by the vocals and the instruments are downplayed in favor of big harmonies and even bigger anthemic vocal choruses. The band starts to shift gears with the Meat Puppets influenced “Heir” before going into the grungier half of the album.

The tracks “Hour of Darkness” and “Reeducation” are solid alt-rock/grunge numbers with tight melodies and chunky guitar riffs. The disc finishes out with “Status Quo” which is a moody alt-rock number with a good bit of build and a noisy outro. (Try listening to this track and not thinking about Nirvana’s “Polly”). The only track I didn’t care for was track “Summer Sun”, which is an alt-rock ballad – decent tempos though keep this song from completely s*cking.

The band has said that their goal for the new disc was to “write catchy songs with layered compositions where you can listen to song over and over and hear different melodic themes popping out”. On this note, Radio Fallout has succeeded masterfully. For anyone who wants more, the band’s second EP, "ETC" (2010), is available as a pay-what-you-will download and vocalist/guitarist Caleb Scates’ solo disc Lo-Fi Audio Circle provides an early look into what Radio Fallout was to become.

Radio Fallout