RA: They're Calling Your Name

Nov 16, 2002

The Bottom Line Ra's different and diverse sound should fit nicely into any rock fan's collection.

During my stays back home in Massachusetts, I usually listen to WAAF, a great rock station. On one of my most recent trips, I constantly heard the DJs talking about a new local band called RA. I can usually trust Jay, Carrie, and the rest at AAF, so after hearing only one song, I said "What the hey?" and purchased the seven-song disc from RA.

I was relieved to see my $10 was well-spent. Their sound is a blend of various styles, but they mesh together into something unique. RA is a talented band that uses older and newer sounds to create a contemporary yet timeless sound for today's rock scene. They now have a full-length album called From One on Universal. As soon as I can get some dough, I'll be checking out the rest of RA's material.

Named after the Egyptian son god, RA is:
Sahaj: vocals, guitar
Skoota Warner: drums
Ben Carroll: guitar
Sean Corcoran: bass

The first RA song to get some airplay is Do You Call My Name?, probably the most unique of the bunch. It starts with Indian beats and then slams into a bouncy and twangy yet heavy beat. The vocals are just as all-over-the-place as the music. This song is unlike most other songs on rock radio right now, but it's heavy and catchy enough to fit in nicely.

Rectifier seems to exhibit some Iron Maiden influence, especially in the chorus in which they stop for half a second before belting out "Rectifier! How's the world supposed to be?" It sounds hair-metalish at times, but again, it's something that sounds fine when mixed in with modern music.

Fallen Rock Zone is an interesting one. It's another bouncy yet heavy tune with angry lyrics directed at men who prey on young women: "Cowardly punk/ You make me nauseous / Misguided fool/ You have no balls." This song is lots of fun, and it sends a good message.

End of Days is one of their strongest songs. It has a Days of the New feeling at some points and an infectious chorus: "I don't wanna live in a prison/ I don't wanna cry in pain/ This will be the last inquisition/ I will be a slave at the end of days." They might want to convince stations to spin this one next to help get the word out.

In addition to rocking out, RA can also take it down and make beautiful ballads like Walking and Thinking. Musically and lyrically strong, this track has a powerfully somber feeling that really shows what an excellent band this is. Sky is another beautiful slow one that picks up into a moving chorus.

Well, there you have it - half of the RA songs there are right now. I'm looking forward to hearing the rest, and I will review From One as soon as I get, provided that Epinions makes a space for it. But if not, I highly recommend that any rock fan checks out RA. Sahaj has a great vocal range, and the rest of the band is incredibly talented - so talented that every song is not only different than most of what's out there now but also different from each other.

For more information, visit www.raband.net.

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