Rufio, The Comfort of Home

Rufio, The Comfort of Home

Rufio are yet another punk-rock band from California — that is, they sound more like hard-rock to me, but they probably think of themselves as a punk band. They engage us in the age-old debate revolving around technical ability vs. inspiration. Is a technically gifted voice more important than a well-written song? Is an inspired but rough performance better than a clich├ęd but well-executed performance?

Unfortunately, Rufio don’t make much of a case for themselves. Their lead singer, regardless of what he’s singing, sounds like he can’t lower himself to actually emote during the songs. The band attempts to expand the punk-rock sound, but it results in bad ’80s hard rock, instead. Their sound would go over really well at a drunken frat party where no one’s actually listening.

Rufio seems to be writing songs according to the Hit Single Theory, which requires that certain characteristics exist in a song in order for it to be Good. As a result, the melodies are absolutely banal and lowest-common-denominator big-radio fluff; the harmonies shriek, “Meaning!”; and the instrumental bits sound like third-rate Eric Johnson (which ain’t a selling point to begin with). They even include (and botch) the required Transition to Acoustic at the end of one song. They try to make their melodies “contemporary” by not just emulating Elliott Smith but borrowing him entirely. By all rights, these guys should be hung by their Ernie Ball extra-light super-slinky guitar strings.

(Nitro Records -- 7071 Warner Ave., Suite F736, Huntington Beach, CA. 92647;; Rufio --
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Review by . Review posted Saturday, October 1st, 2005. Filed under Reviews.

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