Posted by: will | September 21, 2006



Rahim “Ideal Lives” (French Kiss)

Buy it at Insound!

The fact that J. Robbins produces Ideal Lives certainly speaks volumes. Rahim certainly owe a lot to the dischordant beauty of Robbins’ previous bands, Jawbox and Burning Airlines. However the band that Rahim seem to almost emulate are the sadly departed Q And Not U. Q And Not U had a beautiful way of making incredibly complicated music sound warm and inviting. Q And Not U really seemed to find their artistic footing on their second album, Different Damage. Here, Rahim has bested them while they have simply come into their own on this, only their debut album.

Album opener “KlangKlangKlang” is highlighted by some wonderful horn arrangements that truly puts the song into rare territory. The similarities to Q And Not U on “Something From An Amputee” are simply uncanny. “Only Pure” is a slow burning song that shows Rahim has a little soul influence in them. “Forever Love” is the obvious single on Ideal Lives. It’s a wonderful pop tune that recalls the simple but addictively catchy hooks of a band like The Shins. “It’s Not What You Said” recalls the mathy pop of 31 Knots. Ideal Lives loses a little steam towards the end but that can certainly be forgiven considering this is the band’s debut.

The growth from the band’s intial Jungles EP to Ideal Lives is remarkable. Frankly, the band sounds years removed from the skeletal remains of their first works. On the surface, Ideal Lives is a remarkable collection of songs that highlight the band’s impeccable musicianship. But, this is pop music folks…granted at its most complex. The rhythms and textures the band puts forth are impressive and complicated. Yet, it’s the band’s penchant for melody that sets them apart from their peers. It’s the rare band that can make music this dynamic while allowing it to remain remarkably catchy. Rahim are indeed one of those rare wonderful bands

RIYL: Gang Of Four, Q And Not U, Jawbox


Rahim – 10,000 Horses (mp3)

Rahim – Forever Love (mp3)



  1. The first track reminds me a lot of Antelope another great Dischord band.

  2. I like the music. The jangly guitars remind me of Gang of Four but I don’t like the lead vocals.

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