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Posted: Sun Dec 17, 2006 9:12 pm
For the friend upset that Wilco hasn't released another Being There: Capital by Riviera
It's pretty easy to categorize Riviera as alt-country and Americana, especially since they hail from Chicago and sometimes have a bit of twang. On Capital, the band does borrow from the aforementioned genres, but also channels a wide range of rock-related music. For instance, there is a lot of power-pop in with the splendid harmonies and raw riffs that carry the album. Frontman Derek Phillips leads listeners through some of the best driving music of the year, especially "Snails."
Posted: Mon Dec 18, 2006 9:58 pm
Posted: Thu Dec 21, 2006 10:28 pm
Capital is an album that continually grows on you. Much more hopeful (or is it acceptance?) in tone than its predecessor At the End of the American Century, the disc manages to sound both modern and dated at the same time, mixing multiple '70's influences with both fuzzy indie guitar rock and folk Americana.
"Here's to Us" is a great leadoff track rife with hooks and harmonies. "White Limousine" is '70's soul a la The Band or Will Hoge. Rolling Stones imprints are over this record – "Giving Blood" is almost "Satisfaction" done in a minor key, and "Snails" sounds like a modernized version of the Stones. "Dreams" and "Square Peg" fall squarely into this category as well.
"Ash Lane" may sum up Riviera's melding on genres better than any other track - part Americana, part indie rock, and part old school classic rock. "Everything You Know" features Pink Floyd/Bread style harmony, and "Weatherman" drifts more toward Ryan Adams or Wilco.
Riviera has established themselves as an indie band to watch over the last few years. With a DIY ethic, and an appreciation for those who blazed the way, they are a rare group that will appeal to the kids who will download it to the forty-somethings looking for new music that they can still understand and appreciate. Capital is a throwback in the vein of Neil Young and George Harrison, and it is very, very good.
Brian A. Smith
19 December 2006
Posted: Wed Feb 28, 2007 3:03 pm
“Complacent is a place I’ll never see” sings Derek Philips on “Sympathy,” the closing track on Riviera’s sophomore album, Capital. It’s a theme running throughout the Wilco-esque recording. Upbeat tempos belie the five-piece’s down-and-out lyrical outpouring. Falsetto ooh-oohs mask the dissatisfaction in lines “See so many things, but little change/the past is past/but history’s the same/evolution’s slower than a snail” from “Snails.” Capital proves Riviera fits nicely with its Chicago alt-country brethren.
– Janine Schaults
They just can't shake the Wilco comparisons...