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Monuments is Fire In The Radio's monumental moment


Release date: 03 April 2020
02 April 2020, 08:00 Written by Niamh Moore
Monuments is the follow up to the Philadelphia quartet’s 2017 critically acclaimed New Air EP, and is their most confident and ambitious record to date. From R.E.M to The Cure, their diverse range of influences are uncovered throughout the 11 tracks, yet the band have excelled in solidifying their own sound and creating an album that never takes its foot off the pedal.

Opener "Let’s Get to the Start’ does exactly what it says on the tin. From the outset, the lively rhythms and shoegaze tone of frontman Richard Carbone hits right at the heart of pop punk and sets the scene for the rest of the record. The introductory track crescendos to a pints-in-the-air chorus that demands to be heard live.

From here, the band blast into "Gravity", a track that nods to the early era of Alkaline Trio and New York punk pioneers Jawbreaker. Raging guitars complement the throaty croons of Carbone while the rhythm section of Ed Olsen on bass and drummer Adam Caldwell create an undercurrent of fast tempos that sweeps the listener along with it.

From "Rewind" to the heavy "Ex-SF" a sense of urgency is felt throughout most of the album with the combination of thrashing fretwork and pounding drums providing the backbone of many tracks. "Ex-SF" showcases Fire In The Radio at their finest with the paint-stripping vocals complementing the hard-hitting rhythm section brilliantly. "Breaking" is a standout track with haunting guitar tones and an earworm a chorus, sandwiched between eerie and atmospheric verses, combining to create a melancholic sounding anthem.

As the saying goes: save the best to last and in Fire In The Radio’s case, they certainly did. “Save me now / save me from the demons,” cries Carbone during the closing track, "Save Me". It's a standout moment from the album, and one that is sure to remain with the listener as the final notes ring out. This closer encapsulates all the fine things about Monuments – the heartfelt vocals of Carbone, the instrumental interludes and the disconnection between the sombre lyrics and upbeat melodies.

Three albums in and it seems that Fire In The Radio are reaching for new heights. The four-piece have created a record that is unapologetically deep rooted in pop-punk and is performed with ferocious intensity. Maybe it is a coincidence, but it seems that the band’s third album Monuments may just be a monumental moment in their career.

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