Rainbow Kitten Surprise (RKS) debuted their full-length album “HOW TO: FRIEND, LOVE, FREEFALL” in 2018, featuring the song “It’s Called: Freefall,” which gained traction on TikTok and brought in a new audience for the band. After this newfound popularity, RKS seemed to lay low (in terms of releases!) for a period of time, putting out an album of live music and a single (“Work Out”) in 2022. Honestly, I get it — they’ve been busy, currently on tour until Nov. 2023. Plus, their lead vocalist came out as trans a few days before “Work Out” came out. If anyone deserves a break, it’s a trans woman trying to figure herself out. However, almost exactly a year after that single, RKS came out with a new single, “Drop Stop Roll.” This has been a song they’ve been playing live for the past year, but I tragically haven’t been to a concert in over a year so this song may as well have been new to me.
With psychedelic twists, the band’s guitar and achingly beautiful vocals have a chilled out yet engaging feel, with callbacks to iconic musicians and songs such as Muddy Waters, Chuck Berry, and “Roxanne” by The Police. “Drop Stop Roll” has a simple chorus that lends itself well to live performances — an audience loves a chance for engagement. However, as much as I have generally enjoyed RKS in the past, I don’t know if I can say that I like this song. Don’t get me wrong, it isn’t a bad song! It just isn’t something particularly memorable.
It feels like a song that would play in that scene of a coming-of-age movie where the main protagonist puts her earbuds in and leans her head against the bus window. Or, now that I think about it, like a song that would have been featured in the soundtrack for “Life is Strange.” And I don’t think that’s a negative — not every song needs to be a spectacularly original and memorable work. We need music that can serve as a cooldown during live music sets or as the background of a video game. This single doesn’t detract from RKS’s discography, but rather serves to highlight the rest of the band’s work, which has value in and of itself.