Watching a band evolve their sound in real time is a trip. I remember first listening to Hurray For the Riff Raff back in 2014 with their ATO debut, Small Town Heroes, and I remember thinking: “Man, how can a band based in New York play music like they’re from down south?” The answer, of course, is that they started out down south, and then they brought their music up north, so, yeah. There you go.
What would I say if Life on Earth was my first encounter with Hurray For the Riff Raff? No idea. My reaction would be very different. Not worse, mind you, because Life on Earth is a very good record, particularly in the build-up to its title track, where the record pivots and becomes something much, much sadder than it starts out as. (Beautiful sad, not, like, sad sad.)
Have a read of my review, posted over at Paste Magazine, for more.