Rapid Cities
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Rapid Cities

Band Rock Punk


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In some cases, albums where a band knows exactly where they're going and how they'll get there deliver a level of perfection that earlier albums hadn't. However, there is an urgency that blossoms from the creative free-for-all of a band finding their way as they go. There's a visceral energy that perfection just can't achieve. Rapid Cities may not be conscious of this fact, simply because they're in the thick of it.

Machinery Saints flows with the wild abandon of creativity that can't be restrained. They travel the roads of post-hardcore without regard for safety, attacking the sharp angles and starts and stops and stutters with more rage than plan. Oddly enough though, they remained focused, probably by sheer inertia, and their creativity delivers even as it evolves. While there is more than a hint of math rock throughout the album, the band does their math in their heart, not just their head. Feeling their way rather than planning it doesn't dispel their confidence, but rather bolsters it by simple force of will. Amazing.

Overall: 8/10 (Best of Genre)
- Rock and Roll and Meandering Nonsense

There are all sorts of ‘mood sectors’ in punk, hardcore, and indie. For some bands, it’s all about escapist fun, others, an encompassing sense of brutality and all-out heaviness, even if its mostly a facade. And then there are the super-serious thinkers, and emotional outputters. The ones weaned on a FUGAZI discography, a liberal arts degree, and a van that’s been through hell and back. With my apologizes for crude stereotyping, RAPID CITIES, are part of the pensive class, and they’ve got the hefty, droning bass lines, arching guitars, scatter-shot drumming and thoughtful (if not depressing) lyrics to prove it. - PASTEPUNK.com

Whatever turns you on, you can’t deny Rapid Cities’ talent and the quality of this debut album. Open your ears and your mind and give it a chance.
- Altsounds

What Rapid Cities do on their first full-length, Machinery Saints, is essentially a slightly slicker, more melodic take on the Moss Icon discography. See, it's not quite as harsh and straightforward as the Hate in Me 7", but it's far less weirder than the beat poet-type stuff Moss Icon did later.

With all the flailing guitar riffs and distressed singing style, one might also be prone to draw a Hot Cross comparison, likely circa Fair Trades and Farewells. Still, this stuff stands out on its own. By the time you've finished just two tracks, you have a great time change ("Manhattan's Hymn") and the most hook-driven song of them all, with Cass McGrath spouting "One / taking / one / take and run" repeatedly in "In My Mind."

Like MI, Rapid Cities know what they're doing with slower, more methodical jams too, exemplified by "Jaunt on Dying Young" and the quasi-jazz opening to "The N.R.A. and the N.W.A.," the latter of which suddenly shifts gears with a spastic transition and brings a bit of a Nation of Ulysses vibe thanks to that opening, McGrath's more sinister, versatile delivery and a bit of alto sax. They quote Allen Ginsberg and then come up with a juxtaposition of Charlton Heston and Eazy E.

Machinery Saints is a refreshing debut since so few bands are doing this currently. If Rapid Cities can actually stick around for a while it's not hard to envision them eventually carrying the torch for it.
- Punknews.org

It’s dissonant, anguished, and melodic all at the same time. Machine Saints by Rapid Cities is like all the best parts of my favorite Revolution Summer DC bands of the 80’s all rolled into a single band. I really didn’t think bands like this existed anymore beyond the fantasies of art-school weirdos who THINK they sound like this and instead just give me migraines.

Machinery Saints isn’t like that at all. It’s terrifyingly damn close to a perfect post-hardcore/punk album, with an edge that’ll cut you like a prison shiv in the kidneys while you’re in the dinner line over that one cigarette you traded for a blo…nevermind, just get your hands on it. It’s just really, really, really, good.
- Fistfight At The Arthouse

Rapid Cities- Machinery Saints (Love/Hate Rec)

Oh, there are plenty of reasons I'm not the biggest fan of New Jersey; can't pump your own gas, can't make left turns (or is it right turns?), and the upstate area has never been kind to me in general on my many visits there over the years. However, all the amazing music coming out of jersey over the years has just about made up for this- i.e. Lifetime, Rorschach, Sticks and Stones and more recently Transit.

Add Rapid Cities onto that list of great bands from the Garden State. These New Brunswick kids debut LP is a fantastic collection of post-hardcore rockers, drawing inspiration from the early 90's DC scene and adding some nice mathy dynamics to their strong melodies. Articulate and intelligent, Rapid Cities inject powerful musicanship over dissonant guitar work and driving rhythms. Music like this was much more common a decade ago, but they guys manage to give a very modern day feel onto a genre rarely played anymore.

Machinery Saints will occasionally remind you of you all your post-hardcore faves like Fugazi or Refused but are just as likely to make you miss your Braid and Joan of Arc records as well. Ultimately, Rapid Cities are paving a path all their own and this is an excellent starting point.
These guys are very soon going to be breaking out of playing basement shows and headlining clubs- just you wait! - GO211

It looks as if Rapid Cities is almost set to release their debut album Machinery Saints, as they have a record release show planned for the end of May from what I can tell. Even so, the album should be out sometime this spring through Look Again Media. With that being the case, it seems like as good of time as any to post a little bit about the band/record.

The band is based out of New Brunswick, New Jersey and has released a 3-song demo prior to their upcoming album thus far. Rapid Cities are another band making good in the post-hardcore/emo terrain and it’s definitely nice to hear more and more of this coming out these days. While the band seems to be more or less drawing from the early 90’s DC era, there are definitely hints here and there to west coast acts like DLJ, Tanner, etc mixing in a nice mathy sort of flavor to coincide with the records number of strong melodies within. As good as Machinery Saints is, I actually think the album gets better as it progresses with the band taking hold and showcasing much more musicianship than one would maybe expect from a band of their nature. It’s definitely impressive. - Built On a Weak Spot

Rapid Cities
Machinery Saints
By Nicole Villeneuve

It's understandable that a young band like Rapid Cities would dump as much as they possibly could into their debut record — they're full of piss and vinegar and they're hoping to be heard. That isn't groundbreaking but it's appropriate for a group of basement show dwellers from the Mecca of punk: New Brunswick, NJ. Rapid Cities deconstruct the conventions of arrangements and reassemble them into a clean, angular post-core blueprint. There aren't any typical hooks and the vocals are often monotone, even when intense, but there are ample intricate time changes that are just a small part of the impressive instrumentation. The guitars are front-and-centre but never flashy, and as in "The N.R.A. and the N.W.A.," the drums exhibit not only muscle but an accomplished jazzy flair. It's the band's age-particular counter-cultural idealism and passion that save Machinery Saints from being a mishmash throwaway, and once Rapid Cities figure out how to refine their jarring anger and dissonance their confidence and skill might lead to a more thoughtful, dynamic sound. (Love/Hate)
- Exclaim! Magazine


demo2006 - 2006 - A Time & A Place Records
Taste of Liberty tour demo - 2007 - self released
Machinery Saints - 2009 - Love/Hate Records



"Standing sideways in the thin alley ways to escape the wind"

Rapid Cities are the world we live in.

Started in New Brunswick, NJ in 2006 as a concept and punk rock critique by John Terry, Anthony Battiato, Brian Whitney, and Cass McGrath, the band immediately started churning out songs and ideas that reflected the need to move everything they loved in life and music in a forward direction.

Times spent in the studio and in the van were an outlet for wild debate and creative energy. In the next couple years, the band would go on four tours, go through three vans and more than thirty states, accept an invitation to play at MACROCK (Mid-Atlantic College Radio Conference), and share the stage with bands such as The Gaslight Anthem, Joan of Arc, and Medications. Brian would also leave the band after two of these tours and be replaced by Shaun Seneviratne.

In 2008, they sat down in the studio to document their ideas in the form of the debut full length record, "Machinery Saints," an ambitious project that took several months to complete, and would be received to critical acclaim in the punk and indie underground.

Shortly after the record was released in 2009, Anthony would bid the band and his drumkit "Adieu," leaving a vacancy to be filled by Greg Meisenberg.

With this latest lineup change, the band is ready to record a few more songs for upcoming small releases and has plans to be touring in the U.S. and Europe in 2010.