Hidden Talent: The National Rifle

Welcome to a new, and hopefully regular, feature of PopWreck(oning), called “Hidden Talent.” In this segment we will showcase small indie/unsigned bands that you, well, have probably never heard of. Maybe they are brand new, maybe they just don’t advertise, or in the case of our first band, maybe they just play lots of basement shows.

The National Rifle (no, that’s not a mistake, that’s the whole name ), are a 3 piece out of Philadelphia. Their MySpace page leaves much to be desired as far as biographical information, but who needs it when the music speaks for itself.

To put it bluntly, the The National Rifle have a sound that needs to break out of the basement. The first song on their page, “Baby Stole My Gun” starts in with a catchy drum break followed by a bass and nice bright guitar. But wait, is that a xylophone? In a basement punk song? Why yes, it is. And it’s awesome.

The lead vocalist has a voice that is edgy yet endearing. Mixing smooth vocal delivery with quick bursts of rhyming verse leading up to a chorus, this bands voice is already “radio friendly.”

Though a punk band may hate the comparison, this band seems to have taken elements of a sound that might be compared to The Strokes with repetitive, catchy guitar riffs and upbeat hip shaking drums, and made it all their own.

It’s a shame they include almost no background information on themselves, but you wonder if perhaps that is on purpose. Perhaps they want the music to simply speak for itself. After a few listens you realize that they sound like something you’ve heard before, and like nothing you’ve ever heard at all. That is a sure sign of a band on a good path with their sound. And that is what makes this band worthy of being the first in our “Hidden Talent” series.

Tour Dates:
Jul 24 – Fortune Cookie Cabaret & Lounge / New York City
Jul 25 – Molettiere”s Cafe / Lansdale, Pa. (w/ Twenty30)
Jul 26 – The Octararo / Oxford, Pa.
Aug 9 – The Nerve Center / Baltimore, Md.
Aug 10 – HOUSE SHOW!!! clark st / Morgantown, WV
Aug 11 – 503 Oldham Ct. / Lexington, Ky.
Aug 14 – Swing State / Lake Villa, Il.
Aug 15 – Nottingham Co-op / Madison, Wi.
Aug 16 – The Day Old Basement / Macomb, Il.
Aug 18 – the Creephole / Michigan City, In.
Aug 20 – mixTaPeS / East Moline, Il.
Aug 21 – 902 Davis / Kalamazoo, Mi.
Aug 22 – Dayton Dirt Collective / Dayton, Oh.
Sep 05 – Court Tavern / New Brunswick, NJ
Sep 13 – C-Dogg’s House / Trumbull, Ct.

The National Rifle: myspace

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