~~In the ongoing collapse of our collective attention span, the modern indie band at the 5th-album mark draws closer to endangered species status. Rarer still are bands who have managed to maintain the same integrity of creative purpose as Frontier Ruckus.
Enter the Kingdom, their 5th and most lush record to date, serves as an almost desperate invitation into the band’s most recurrent setting: the suburban American household. It is immediately apparent, however, that the emphasis this time is not so much on idyllic nostalgia but the very real and present tense disintegration of a personal kingdom once thought permanent.
We are thrust into stained living rooms where dads search for work on Craigslist, carports prowled by drunken ex-spouses returning with dubious motives, mega church rec rooms marked by lust and disrepair.
Songwriter Matthew Milia has explained the album as a rather literal depiction of his father losing his job and relying on disability checks to retain a tenuous grasp on his childhood home. The specificity with which this is conveyed to the listener is harrowing at times, though never in full abandonment of a dark and balancing sense of humour.
“Well-educated, literary-inclined American songwriters are hardly thin on the ground, but Frontier Ruckus’s Matthew Milia’s poetic inclination always sets him apart.” MOJO
“Full of muted desperation, Milia conjuring a less-than-cosy world of strip malls, Prozac and missed opportunities with humour and pathos…” UNCUT
"A band at the top of their game, primed and ready for discovery by a whole new audience… frontier ruckus have doubled-down on what it is that makes them unique, and in doing so have succeeded in adding a new level of orchestrated depth to their countrified folk tales, further cementing Enter the Kingdom with that oh-so-hard-to-find ‘timeless’ quality.”