It seems emo-riffic New Jersey just grew some cajones. Rye Coalition may have formed over a decade ago and have four full-lengths under their jockstraps, but not until now have they proven they’ve been going for the groin the whole time.
Rye Coalition’s fattened-up AC/DC-sleaze schtick has been the same since the beginning, but it’s taken Dave Grohl, who produced Curses, to get their mojo flowing. Grohl’s influences on the band are undeniable: Rye Coalition formed just as music circles were experiencing Nirvana-rama, they started recording albums alongside Foo Fighters’ spoofs of Mentos commercials, and they signed to the major leagues (the ill-fated DreamWorks) when Queens of the Stone Age broke out with riff-heavy demolition rock.
With songcraft that encompasses some of Grohl’s best come-ons — thundering, sassy, and hedonistic — it seems with Curses the zeitgeist has finally hit. While Rye Coalition’s anthemic and indulgent cuts sport titles that might read too cheeky to take seriously (“Tequila Mockingbird (P.T.E.),” “Vietnam Veterinarian,” and “Between an I-Roc and a Hard Place”), the band lather on balls-out garage-glam with enough impressive sincerity that the tracks never sound stupid. Plus, they’ve got the earnestness to light up arenas, or, at least, Camaros for backseat escapades.