Rufio made quite a wave in the music community after their highly acclaimed 2001 album, Sometime I Suppose. Mixing elements of emo, rock, and a speedcore mentality, Rufio could be described as emo at 200 miles per hour. Think of a poppier 1996-era Millencolin and you'll get somewhat of an idea of what Rufio sounds like. For some, it's the best thing that can happen, and for others it may just be a bland type of music. No doubt though that Rufio is being closely watched by thousands. In preparation for a new full-length record, Rufio released their self-titled EP to sample some totally new songs. Unfortunately, those totally new songs are 3 in number and $5 in price. Of course, dedicated fans will definitely want to pick this up, but all in all even three good songs may not warrant purchase, considering it may just be easier to get them for free.
One big improvement over Rufio's last release is that their lead singer has developed somewhat of a deeper voice, which makes him a little less annoying. While many appreciated the vocals of Rufio, it grated on many with the high pitched stylings. A little deeper and more mature singer makes for a much better release this time around, and definite optimism to the new Rufio album coming out soon. What hasn't changed are the amazing guitars, bass, and light speed drumming. The music really makes Rufio so unique as a band, and the speed brought to it really makes it as good as it is. The vocals, while at times grating, also add a nice touch to the songs.
Things start off in regular Rufio fashion with "Why Wait", as the guitars rip right through the song followed by equally tough drums. Already in the song, we are showcased Rufio's excellent songwriting abilities. Everything in the album flows perfectly, and sounds excellent. The vocals do a pretty nice job of conveying the lyrics, but do get melodramatic at times. The chorus is probably the sweetest part of the song, going something like..."Why wait for you to come home, why search for answers to nothing, dont come back crying for help, why wait for life to come?"
"Don't Hate Me" starts off with an even sweeter riff than the first song. The vocals are probably the most grating on this song, though, getting high-pitched. A little bit through, though, you can definitely get used it. The music in the song is amazing though, with the guitars doing probably the best work on the EP. This song, though, is probably the weakest showcase of lyrics. The song deals with relationships, an overdone genre. It doesn't grate, but it's definitely nothing to write home about. The soft parts of the song give a beautiful showcase for the drums, which can be fast and aggressive one second, and soft and restrained another. Overall a good song, and another nice one on the album.
Rufio saved the best for last, though, and this comes in the form of "Set It Off", a 3 minute straight out punk song. The vocals barely grate in this song, and are actually quite amazing at points. The guitars and drums are yet again awesome. The song begins fast and hard, but gets even stronger in the chorus, and amazing showcase of the vocals. The music is excellent all throughout the song. If you want a great example of the potential Rufio is capable of, "Set It Off" does it much better than any song on this EP.
Overall, Rufio's EP shows definite progress on already good material. Good lyrics, great music, and decent vocals are quite a mix, and while still with much room for improvement, the EP has some very nice songs. The only problem is that there are only three, and spending 5 bucks for 3 songs which are less than perfect isn't too enticing for newcomers. Still overall, a nice job.
V P is a Contributing Writer. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.