Rapid Cities - Machinery Saints (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

Rapid Cities

Machinery Saints (2009)

Love/Hate / Look Again

What Rapid Cities do on their first full-length, Machinery Saints, is essentially a slightly slicker, more melodic take on the Moss Icon discography. See, it's not quite as harsh and straightforward as the Hate in Me 7", but it's far less weirder than the beat poet-type stuff Moss Icon did later.

With all the flailing guitar riffs and distressed singing style, one might also be prone to draw a Hot Cross comparison, likely circa Fair Trades and Farewells. Still, this stuff stands out on its own. By the time you've finished just two tracks, you have a great time change ("Manhattan's Hymn") and the most hook-driven song of them all, with Cass McGrath spouting "One / taking / one / take and run" repeatedly in "In My Mind."

Like MI, Rapid Cities know what they're doing with slower, more methodical jams too, exemplified by "Jaunt on Dying Young" and the quasi-jazz opening to "The N.R.A. and the N.W.A.," the latter of which suddenly shifts gears with a spastic transition and brings a bit of a Nation of Ulysses vibe thanks to that opening, McGrath's more sinister, versatile delivery and a bit of alto sax. They quote Allen Ginsberg and then come up with a juxtaposition of Charlton Heston and Eazy E.

Machinery Saints is a refreshing debut since so few bands are doing this currently. If Rapid Cities can actually stick around for a while it's not hard to envision them eventually carrying the torch for it.

In My Mind
Jaunt on Dying Young
album preview