Rascal Flatts, ‘Riot’ [Listen]
Rascal Flatts' 'Riot' hits on everything fans love about the country trio. With stellar harmonies, richly layered instrumentation and a feel that's intimate and anthemic all at once, the single fits perfectly into the Flatts' canon.
The lyrics to the third single from the group's ninth studio album may be a bit misleading at first. To start, 'Riot' sounds like just another song about the pain and longing of a breakup. But Gary LeVox isn't singing about losing his girl, he's singing about what it would be like if he lost her. Just the thought of a relationship ending prompts some powerful words of heartache.
"I'd be ridin' in a cab goin' downtown / Findin' faces I know in a big crowd / Tryin' to drink the pain away, mmhmm / And I'd be stayin' out all night, never goin' home / Girl you know I'd lose all control / If I lost you."
Sonically, 'Riot' is complex and beautiful, playing to the strengths of each band member perfectly. LeVox's vocals are pristine, on-point and only deepened by stellar harmonies from bandmates Jay DeMarcus and Joe Don Rooney, who shine in their own elements. The guitar riffs and crescendoing instrumentation create a soaring sound, while the soft cello underneath provides the foundation for a track that will play just as well in intimate acoustic settings as it will in the huge arenas Rascal Flatts play on a regular basis.
Ultimately, what makes 'Riot' truly magical is that three distinctly talented musicians come together to create a song that is so many things all at once. It is intimate and grand. It is heartbreaking and sweet. And it is just the sort of song that Rascal Flatts prove they are masters of again and again.
Why Fans Will Love It: 'Riot' is classic Rascal Flatts, reminding fans why they love the Nashville trio and introducing a new set of listeners to their powerful sound.
Key Lyrics: "There would be a riot / Breakin' of my heart, I'd try to fight it / I could go out every night but I'd be lyin' / If I said I could live and breathe / There'd be a lot of lonely / Wishin' and prayin' that you would hold me / I would do most anything baby if only / You would come back to me / Come back to me / There would be a riot / If I ever lost you."
Did You Know? Rascal Flatts say they knew that 'Riot' had to be on their album the very first time they heard it. And they talked about their experience with the song and performed an intimate acoustic version exclusively for Taste of Country. Catch the video here.
Listen to Rascal Flatts, 'Riot'