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Indie band Ra Ra Riot readies second album PDF Print E-mail

Indie band Ra Ra Riot readies second albumNEW YORK (Billboard) - Just as the members of indie-pop band Ra Ra Riot were getting ready to hit the big time in 2007, tragedy struck, with the drowning death of the group's drummer, John Pike.

But the band rebounded, releasing "The Rhumb Line" on Barsuk Records in 2008 and touring extensively. Now the members face another challenge -- releasing a follow-up and sustaining their career.

The list of indie bands felled by the fabled sophomore slump is long and ever-growing. But Ra Ra Riot, whose album "The Orchard" is out August 24, again on Barsuk, seems well positioned to beat the odds.

"Instead of being just super hyped and buzzed about, the band has developed a dedicated fan base," manager Josh Roth says. "They love touring and they love playing live, and I think they are in a great position to just keep growing."

Which isn't to say the band isn't concerned about its future. "I have a recurring nightmare that one day I'll wake up and never be able to write another song," frontman Wes Miles says. "But I try to steer clear of having too many quantifiable expectations, because spending all your time being worried about others' expectations just makes things worse."

To roll out the new album, the band will release a 40-minute film made during the writing and recording sessions. "It's half art piece and half documentary with interviews with the band," Barsuk co-founder Josh Rosenfeld says. The film will be included with the deluxe version of the album.

The band will play a handful of dates in August before heading off on a full tour in the fall. Miles says that these tour stops allow him to build a rapport with fans.

 

With a dedicated base and support from Barsuk, Ra Ra Riot appears set to follow in the footsteps of label alums Death Cab for Cutie. Rosenfeld says he doesn't want to make any grand predictions, noting that "the environment then versus now is like apples and oranges."

Last Updated on Saturday, 14 August 2010 15:23
 

Newsflash Archive

Excuse me for the double take, but no sooner have we read from Radiohead's bassist Colin Greenwood that they "have just finished another group of songs, and have begun to wonder about how to release them" and from guitarist Ed O'Brien, in June, that Radiohead is currently back in the studio putting the finishing touches on the "best album we've ever made" when drummer Phil Selway adds a cautious note that they "might just throw this all out."  Thom Yorke may well look puzzled.

Perhaps too much was read into Greenwood's comments in the article he wrote for Index on Censorship explaining why the band released their last album, In Rainbows, directly to the fans? In his essay, he wrote, "Three years later, we have just finished another group of songs, and have begun to wonder about how to release them in a digital landscape that has changed again." Later in the piece he added, "We have yet to decide how to release our next record, but I hope these partial impressions will help give some idea of the conversations we’ve been having." His article was never intended to announce the pending release of a new Radiohead album.

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