Record label: Deep Elm
Ride Your Bike from Santa Monica, California are an interesting beast, sounding nothing like anything Deep Elm records have previously put out, with eccentric intrumentalisation and a distinctly pop feel, I haven’t been able to stop listening to this of late.
These songs rarely hit anything faster than mid-tempo, but theres a sense high revs on a low gear, rather than a lack of passion, there is always something going on, something to catch your attention, make you want to re listen, something to make you smile. Ride Your Bike rarely go near the clutch, but why would they, when they’ve created a near perfect pop record doing exactly what they do.
The vocals have a distinctly Conor Oberst twang to them, and I must say that at times the lyrics combining honesty with eloquence, are remininsent of Bright Eyes too, “Would you smile for me just this once, like you used to, when the bells sent us off” brightens my day just as much as any lyrics I’ve heard all year.
Musically I’d say this sounds like The Weakerthans crossed with a little Deja Entendu era Brand New and a scattering of erratic sounding compositions. There is definately a great deal of musical variety evident here. From the upbeat sounding pop-punk of ‘So If We’, which itself crashes into a string laden middle section, perfectly typifying the whole album.
It doesn’t move particularily quickly, but here are more than a few cracking songs. ‘Sticks and Stones’ is probably my favourite, featuring a tempo change, scattering of different riffs and a really sweet chorus, that’ll have you singing along before too long. Every track is a highlight in its own way, I would highly recommend this album to anyone.