Although originally from New Zealand, Rival State this year upped sticks and moved to London in order to seek more opportunities. Not that New Zealand is in the back of beyond but the UK has some of the best rock in the world and is also a handy little Island for exporting that rock into Europe and a far bigger audience.
For a band who originally formed in 2002 whilst still at High School, a hiatus 5 years later when the band separately travelled across Europe and the UK, and a planned three month reformation in 2011 that still hasn’t ended, the move for Rival State has been a productive one. Members Luke (Vocals), Nimal (Guitar), Jo (Guitar), Stef (Bass) and Valdi (Drums) have been gaining a lot of attention since their 2012 debut album ‘Apollo Me’ with plays on mainstream radio of their single ‘Aces’ and an appearance at Sonisphere this year.
‘Apollo Me’ written over 3 months and reaching Number 1 in the NZ charts is full of huge guitar riffs and a slightly raw and brash sound reminiscent of other bands that emerged around the same time. Catchy hooks with an undertone of monster sounding rock elements on songs such as ‘Sisters Of Fate’ to a much dirtier sounding ‘Four Leaf Clover’ with gritty guitars and melodic vocals, the album produced 3 singles that all reached the top 5 in their home country.
‘Sleep Talker’ their current UK single taken from their new EP ‘Youth Tax’ starts off with fast paced in your face guitars that remain throughout the whole song providing an epic sound that is relentless from start to finish. ‘Aces’ which has brought Rival State to the attention of a lot more people is a true anthem of a song, the dirty guitars and rhythm engulfing the song with an addictive chorus. Following on from their album and with so many elements within the rock music of Rival State, this is a band that sounds fresh and vibrant.
Rival State are releasing their ‘Youth Tax’ EP on 27th October and are about to embark on a tour of the UK to promote this and to reach out to a wider audience. With their unique rock sound, this is going to be the tour that is going to show the UK that this is what rock music should be all about, so catch them on one of the dates below as they are extensively touring the UK this month with some additional dates in December supporting Black Spiders. Rival State with their exciting rock sound are going to be the band to watch.
Rival State UK Tour:
Oct 18 The Craufurd Arms, Old Wolverton
Oct 22 Black Heart, London
Oct 23 Rock City, Nottingham
Oct 24 Think Tank, Newcastle
Oct 25 Glasgow Garage, Glasgow
Oct 27 Sound Control, Manchester
Oct 28 The Flapper, Birmingham
Oct 29 The Horn, St Albans
Oct 30 The Joiners, Southampton
Oct 31 Sticky Mike’s Frog Bar, Brighton
Nov 01 Nightmare Festival, Camden Town
Dec 03 Cavern, Exeter
Dec 04 THE GARAGE, London
Dec 05 Thekla, Bristol
Dec 06 WINTER FEST, Sheffield
Dec 07 Academy 3, Manchester
Dec 08 Cathouse, Glasgow
Tickets for most of their shows can be purchased from Ents 24 http://www.ents24.com/uk/tour-dates/rival-state
The website for Rival State is http://www.rivalstate.net. They can be found on Facebook and Twitter @rivalstate. Their album is available on iTunes and you can hear a couple of their tracks on SoundCloud https://soundcloud.com/rivalstate along with their official YouTube channel.
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