Dial up your energy levels with the fast-paced, raucous punk rock’n’roll sound of Australian band Riff Raiders.
The Melbourne five-piece have taken a fresh approach to classic rock, with every song built around delicious riffing with big catchy choruses and hooks.
The band released a double singled Loaded Gun and Best Day Ever in February, before releasing second album Rock n Roll Daydream last month.
From it, they sent us Best Day Ever, which opens up with lively punky guitar chords. It drops into frontwoman Jenni Powell’s engaging vocals in the chorus “I don’t really know if I can live forever, This is going down as the best day ever, Even your frown doesn’t get me down today, I’m OK.”
The pace drops a little for the vocals “Call in sick and walk down to the beach, Close my eyes and stare into the sun, Found $50 in the backseat of my car, Hit the bar, shout at everyone, What’s done is done, It’s only fun,” which feeds into the catchy chorus. Check it out in the video below:
The album is packed with engaging punk rock goodness, but a personal favourite track is Stop Looking At Me. It opens up with a little guitar riff answered by a heavier response, which feeds into a verse of angsty vocals over a funky little riff.
It builds up with a heavier pre-chorus “The hands of time are praying on you, Your memories are eating you alive, The sands of time are weighing on you” that launches into cries of “Stop looking at me” between lively guitar riffs.
A second chorus gives way to an awesome screechy solo, that drops into vocals “Stop looking at me, ‘Cause your fucked up shit ain’t right, And when you see, If you ever get it right, You meant nothing to me, Doesn’t matter who you are, You can take it from me that you’ll never get that far.” And the song comes to a heavy ending with cries of “Stop looking at me” alongside funky riffs. Check it out below:
We had a chat with the band to find out more. Read on below…
GR: Who are Riff Raiders?
RR: “Melbourne, Australia hard rock outfit Riff Raiders began life in 2015. Made up of indie stalwarts Marty Powell (guitar) and Jenni Powell (Vocals), now joined by Detroit born Ron E Smith (Bass), Ross Hetherington (Drums ex Bodyjar / Dirt River Radio) and Josh King (guitar ex The Resheads, The Bits) in 2019. This band has blown away punters with its authentic approach and edgy finesse to playing rock n roll.”
GR: You just released Best Day Ever. What should people be expecting from the song?
RR: “Best Day Ever is upbeat catchy heavy power pop. It’s about daydreaming – calling in sick for work and going down to the beach, finding $50 in the back seat of your car, winning a raffle, meeting an old friend, shopping hard, enjoying a sunny day when you should be somewhere else.
“Marty writes all the Riff Raiders tunes. This was inspired by one of Jenni and Marty’s kids whinging that this was the ‘worst day ever,’ which he twisted into the exact opposite to cheer that kid up!”
GR: And, this came from your recently released album, so what should people be expecting from that?
RR: “The album is about escapism, high energy and emotions captured in different styles of Rock music.”
GR: How would you describe your sound to people that haven’t listened to you yet?
RR: “A fresh approach to classic rock, every song is built around at least one riff with catchy choruses and hooks. Draws on 1970s and 1990s hard rock, power pop and punk vibes plus modern melody. Deceptively simplistic and easy to listen to.”
GR: What influences you to write music? Any key themes or topics that you write about?
RR: “Marty writes about anything and everything that happens around him being in an active and fun rock band as well as life with his life/musical partner Jenni and their kids. No distinct themes or topics, if it’s happy it’s happy, if it’s angry or sad, it’s just that too.”
GR: Which bands/musicians are/have been your strongest musical influences?
RR: “Too many to mention, but major influences in the past have been Cheap Trick, Led Zeppelin, Badfinger, The Beatles, Thin Lizzy, The Darkness, Queen, Muse, Jellyfish, AC/DC, Skyhooks, Wings, Zoot.”
GR: What have you got coming up in 2020?
RR: “We have new recording and touring to recommence after COVID-19!”