Most famous for his now-defunct Oi! group with the awkward name of Discharger, Steinfort expanded his expression to country music during the final years of aforementioned bands’ existence. Steinfort, whose voice has both gravel and charisma in it, proves on this album that he can not only belt out angry working class punk rock but also melanholic, defiant country.
Sadly, even if Steinforts’ vocals are quite adept, the rest of the album isn’t particularly impressive. It’s not that there’s anything wrong with it as such; the big issue here is that it feels too much like a cookie-cutter neo-outlaw country album with all the clichés and tropes you’d expect from one, but not much more than that. Songs about being on death row, about drinking, about being low-down, about defiance in the face of adversity, vocals that sound like they’re going for a hint of that whiskey rasp… well, you know, the whole ten yards of generic outlaw country, with more than a hint of what Johnny Cash did on his American albums thrown in for good measure. The “hit” song of the album is This One’s For Us, which comes across as something of a street punk-meets-Johnny Cash song.
Ultimately, When The Rain Falls comes across as an extracurricular exercise, a sort of “I can do this too” -type of album. Nothing wrong with that, of course, but I feel an album of that kind is more about satisfying the artist than providing much of durable listening value, and easily leaves the audience a bit cold. Which is exactly what When The Rain Falls does. With a bit more ambition, this could have been a more satisfying album. As it is, When The Rain Falls is an interesting curio for fans of Discharger (and Steinforts’ new band, Haymaker), but not much more.