Mice & Rifles
Reviewed by Doug Freeman, Fri., Aug. 3, 2007
Mice & RiflesAll Kites Up
The tension underlying Mice & Rifles' debut EP is encapsulated in Kevin Brinkkoeter's husky voice set against droning keys and swooning guitar. Barren horizons open up only to be collapsed by drums and Brinkkoeter, as with the dark wax and wane of "Telegrams" and "I Can Tell." "Balance" crackles with an acerbic disillusion of love, while "American Victory" laces its chugging rhythms through a condemning political tirade. Most exceptional is opener "Storms," with Brinkkoeter echoing both Johnny Cash's baritone and new local Micah P. Hinson's weary drawl. And although closing All Kites Up with the Smiths' "There Is a Light That Never Goes Out" seems dubious, the song is impressively rendered, mirroring Richard Hawley's blend of Britpop and Americana.