The Rhumb Line

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The Rhumb Line
Studio album by Ra Ra Riot
Released August 19, 2008
Recorded Bear Creek Studio, Seattle (December, 2007)
Genre Indie rock, indie pop
Length 36:58
Label Barsuk
Producer Ryan Hadlock
Ra Ra Riot chronology
Ra Ra Riot
(2007)Ra Ra Riot2007
The Rhumb Line
The Orchard
(2010)The Orchard2010
Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Source Rating
Metacritic 75/100[1]
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4/5 stars[2]
Drowned In Sound (8/10)[3]
Entertainment Weekly (A-)[4]
musicOMH 4.5/5 stars[5]
Pitchfork Media (7.5/10)[6]
Rolling Stone 4/5 stars[7]

The Rhumb Line is the debut LP for the Syracuse-based indie rock band Ra Ra Riot. Recorded in late 2007 with Ryan Hadlock in Woodinville, WA,[8] the band released their debut album on August 19, 2008, through Seattle-based indie label Barsuk Records.[9] The album peaked at #109 on the Billboard 200. This album was ranked as the 38th best album of 2008 by Rolling Stone.


The track listing includes the Kate Bush cover "Suspended in Gaffa". Other songs, "Ghost Under Rocks", "Each Year", "Dying Is Fine", and "Can You Tell", previously appeared on the band's 2007 self-titled EP. Also, during a Lounge Act session (January 30, 2008), the band showcased "Too Too Too Fast", "Oh, La", and "Run My Mouth". Several of the songs contained in the album are literary references such as "Each Year" which appears to be written about Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird and "Dying Is Fine" using the poem by E.E. Cummings. "St. Peter's Day Festival" commemorates the loss of band mate John Pike, who went missing in June 2007 but was later found dead in Buzzard's Bay.

Track listing[edit]

All tracks written by Ra Ra Riot (Wes Miles, Mathieu Santos, Milo Bonacci, Alexandra Lawn, Rebecca Zeller), except where noted.

  1. "Ghost Under Rocks" (John Pike, Ra Ra Riot) – 4:26
  2. "Each Year" (John Pike, Ra Ra Riot) – 3:16
  3. "St. Peter's Day Festival" (John Pike, Wes Miles) – 3:34
  4. "Winter '05" – 2:57
  5. "Dying Is Fine" (John Pike, Wes Miles, e. e. cummings) – 3:52
  6. "Can You Tell" – 2:42
  7. "Too Too Too Fast" (John Pike, Ra Ra Riot) – 3:46
  8. "Oh, La" – 4:42
  9. "Suspended in Gaffa" (Kate Bush) – 3:48
  10. "Run My Mouth" – 3:58


  • "Dying Is Fine" on YouTube: Directed by Albert Birney, Nicholas Gurewitch, and Jon Moses.
  • "Ghost Under Rocks": Directed by Brian Savelson.
  • "Can You Tell": Directed by Taryn Gould and Emily Kowalczyk


  • Milo Bonacci – guitar
  • Alexandra Lawn – cello
  • Wesley Miles – keyboards, vocals
  • Mathieu Santos – bass guitar
  • Rebecca Zeller – violin
  • Cameron Wisch – drums


  1. ^ "The Rhumb Line by Ra Ra Riot". Retrieved 1 October 2016. 
  2. ^ Allmusic review
  3. ^ "Album Review: Ra Ra Riot - The Rhumb Line". Retrieved 1 October 2016. 
  4. ^ "The Rhumb Line -". Retrieved 1 October 2016. 
  5. ^ musicOMH review
  6. ^ "Ra Ra Riot: The Rhumb Line Album Review - Pitchfork". Retrieved 1 October 2016. 
  7. ^ Rolling Stone review at the Wayback Machine (archived August 21, 2008)
  8. ^ Backbeat Online, "Q&A with Wes Miles of Ra Ra Riot" Denver Westword, June 11, 2008.
  9. ^ Dave Maher, "Ra Ra Riot Sign to Barsuk, Reveal Debut Album", Pitchfork Media, June 6, 2008.

External links[edit]