Matthew Milia could probably have had a successful career as a novelist if he hadn't decided to form the band Frontier Ruckus. Milia's songs attest to the man's talent for telling a story, and he has a knack for finding the details that make his tales come to life, from the slob watching the final episode of his favorite show in his sweatpants ("Visit Me") and the middle-aged guy scanning the employment ads on craigslist ("Sarah Springtime") to the amount of money a well-off former girlfriend owes her still-bitter ex ("27 Dollars"). Released in 2017, Enter the Kingdom, Frontier Ruckus' sixth album, finds the indie pop influences that were seeping into their sound on 2014's Sitcom Afterlife becoming all the more prominent, though there's still a folky warmth that dominates these songs, and the production by former Wilco and Uncle Tupelo drummer Ken Coomer finds a sweet spot that makes the most of Milia's melodies whichever way they turn.
Frontier Ruckus Enter the Kingdom (Sitcom Universe) The fifth album from Michigan rust belters Frontier Ruckus is a study in contrasts. Its lush music — used to describe a dysfunctional family suburban setting — seems at odds with the typically tough Detroit landscape from which it emerges. The area — often identified by the gutsy street punk of Iggy and the Stooges, the rugged pop of the Pretenders, the madman metal of Ted Nugent, the rambling gambling garage anthems of Bob Seger, the ear splitting blues rawk of Grand Funk Railroad and the blistering psychedelic soul of Funkadelic — has conversely in Frontier Ruckus yielded one of the most sedate, serene, sweeping chamber folk-pop bands currently working.