Ritter - Six Degrees of Variation (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review


Six Degrees of Variation (2004)

Jump Start

Named after a street in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, and not the late, great actor, Ritter plays an excellent skate punk style that's actually quite good for the derivative genre they're doing.

The EP's title speaks for itself. All six songs on this EP all differ in tempos a bit too much to justify the skate punk label, because also incorporated is some melodic pop and new-school post-punk in the vein of Gastby's American Dream, and it helps shift the environment significantly, but not dramatically. There is also a distinct change in moods frequently, whether it be dark, downtrodden apathy, or an upbeat, almost-happy Lagwagon feel. Consistently through is this direct urgency that reminds me of the Methadones' "Solitude." The vocalists are also solid, by singing not too deep but not at all whiny or nasally.

They even put Edgar Allen Poe's "Alone" to music, and use a bit of metal-influenced riffing and growls that sound much less out of place than they should be, with a slight amount of piano in the bridge to cap it off.

There's a great amount of potential Ritter holds, and we'll just have to wait and see if they can make that common transition to a solid, if not great, full-length.