Sideways To New Italy

Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever - Sideways To New Italy
Critic Score
Based on 20 reviews
2020 Ratings: #216 / 343
User Score
Based on 169 ratings
2020 Ratings: #314
Liked by 5 people
June 5, 2020 / Release Date
LP / Format
Sub Pop / Label
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The Sydney Morning Herald

After two years on the international tour-path, Melbourne's Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever are back, a little less fresh-faced than on 2018's Hope Downs, and all the more interesting for it.


In heading Sideways to New Italy, Rolling Blackouts C.F. continue to make a strong case as one of Australia’s most vital rock acts, if not the world’s.

Beats Per Minute
Striking the balance between progression into new musical territory and refinement of their established sound, they come into their own on a record that presents a souped-up version of the band; Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever Mark 2, if you will.

The once-chipper Melbourne five-piece reflect on sombre notions of refuge and home – though, thankfully, the masterful guitar-pop remains.


The album is another strong point in the case that Rolling Blackouts are making the best guitar pop anywhere in 2020.

Under The Radar

Their notable consistency and subtle growth prove this is an act constantly on the rise and one to continue to watch.

The Observer

While it is excellent in places, Sideways to New Italy doesn’t quite rise to the same heights as its predecessor.

Loud and Quiet

Scattering guest vocals from friends and burying Easter eggs only detectable for those who are keenly familiar with the band’s history, Sideways To New Italy makes up a unique time capsule that’s engineered as much to thrill their audience as to indulge the band’s own sentimentality.

Northern Transmissions

Bright, brilliant and clear, Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever’s Sideways To New Italy takes you on the sweetest summertime journey, one that you’ll be able to enjoy all year long.


Channeling a refreshing and bright take on surf rock, RBCF tip their hat to their longstanding cultural background, evoking Australia’s vast, sprawling spaces through painterly songwriting. 


Sideways to New Italy is not only the perfect summer companion, but it also makes room for a reflective experience.


Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever have produced an album that dangles a carrot of the possibilities of exploration at the time of the impossible, but they are absolutely better off for doing so.


If you’re looking for a modern, uplifting celebration of all things riff, these boys have got your back.

Louder Than War

Ultimately, Sideways to New Italy succeeds at doing what Rolling Blackouts C.F. have always been good at. The guitar interplay is as explosive as ever here – and is sure to singe eyebrows at their live shows – even if the overall experience is just that little bit less airtight than on their last album.

The Melbourne quintet’s second album strolls through familiar territory with good guitar work and good songwriting that never quite peaks where it used to.
The Line of Best Fit

With multiple writers Sideways to New Italy perhaps lacks the focus and clear direction that the music deserves.

No Ripcord

What’s great about Sideways to New Italy is that it can be used as background noise, but anyone who has it in a vibe playlist will notice its' quality compared to its peers.

God Is in the TV
The epitome of the Difficult Second Album then, and a record that finds RBCF caught between the sound that made their debut such a delight, and a more expansive, commercial and far less interesting direction, the latter just about winning out. What a shame.
The Young Folks

Here, the melodies are good, but the songs still fall flat. They are good at writing lyrics, but the lyrics do not feel satisfactorily cohesive.

Bit of a drop off.
Australian Indie rock group Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever burst onto the scene in 2018 with their debut Hope Downs and the lead single Talking Straight that grabbed the attention of many people who had never heard them before. A five-piece band with 3 members on guitar and vocal duty, their debut was fun and well structured, all the singers sounded great as well. While i did enjoy the album, it was only that single that has actually stuck with me since then.
2 years later we're already ... read more
It might be just a fun, breezy summer record, but I'm not complaining about that too much right now.
Whilst this does feel like a bit of a step-down from Hope Downs this is still an extremely fun record with some of the band's best tracks. Hopefully, the band manages to do something new and fresh on their next project.

Best Track: Cars In Space
Worst Track: Not Tonight
ayo ty 2 everyone thats reviewed are u sick of being unlucky on here the feedback has actually been amazin <33333 sHOUTOUT YaLL
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Track List

  1. The Second of the First
  2. Falling Thunder
  3. She's There
  4. Beautiful Steven
  5. The Only One
  6. Cars in Space
  7. Cameo
  8. Not Tonight
  9. Sunglasses at the Wedding
  10. The Cool Change
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Added on: March 31, 2020