Music Review: The Rhumb Line

Ra Ra Riot's first full-length album is a burst of ecstatic pop, sure to charm sophisticates and thrill seekers alike.

When Wesley Miles exclaims, "It's hard to stay cool," he's not kidding. The first full-length album from this quintet is a burst of ecstatic pop that matches the rousing energy of stadium anthems, but not their predictability. However urgent the passions of "Dying Is Fine" (whose title comes from an e.e. cummings poem) or "Too Too Too Fast," Ra Ra Riot maintains a light touch, letting nimble cello and violin frame the bright melodies. The marriage of visceral and cerebral in "Ghost Under Rocks" and "Run My Mouth" will charm sophisticates and thrill seekers alike.

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