Press Coverage:

The Rationales have long been among Boston’s finest purveyors of power pop but Upstream takes them to new heights. Their hallmark harmonies and addictive melodies are as strong as ever, but what sets this album apart from their previous work is the outstanding musical interplay fueled by electric guitars with plenty of keyboards and pedal steel. You’ll be hard-pressed to not crank it up and lose yourself in rock and roll abandon.
- Mayer Danzig, Twangville "Best of,"  Dec 2017


"Upstream is one of the best albums that you'll hear this year." "70's UK Pop Rock with some killer guitar."
"I've seen The Rationales labelled as Americana, I don't see that at all. There is a connection with the better end of that catch all genre, say the rockier songs of Wilco or the harmonies of The Jayhawks, but the band have far more depth than that."
-Don Valentine, I Don't Hear a Single (U.K.) 2017


"The Rationales’ triumphant new album ‘Upstream’ Upstream is a record with both contextual meaning and glow, another sterling effort that holds up as further proof the sextet remains one of the more trusted bands to emerge from Boston over the past decade. Taking the title quite literally, the Rats have always swam upstream against the city’s trends and styles; instead crafting a swirling cocktail of alt-rock, Americana, and power-pop, created on their own terms and judged by their own personal merits."  "The flashes of intrigue are constant on “Ready To Go” and elsewhere across Upstream’s seven tracks. The guitarwork on “Trade You” takes the song into another rock/pop stratosphere, and “Under The Gun” has some remarkable late-’80s power ballad vibes. Combine that with rootsy, everybody-all-in closer “Dulcinea” and the FM radio jubilation of the aforementioned “Take A Ride With Me,” and the Rats’ have crafted one hell of a complete LP. "
-Michael Marrotta, Vanyaland, August 3, 2017


 "“Upstream” is about as good as rock ’n’ roll gets." ... "Easily the best thing the Rationales has done (no small feat, its past is full of gems)"... "Each tune feels natural, effortless. I imagine [he] labored over every power pop turn, big rock hook and downtempo change. You don’t pen anything as catchy as “All the While” or cathartic as “Dulcinea” without hard work." ... "Raleigh’s lead parts on the new Rationales disc prove... immense" ... "I’m not ready for a world without this album."
- Jed Gottlieb, Boston Herald, August 2017


"The Rationales have become a live force... is executing at best-of-career levels and could be the best stage act in the region today. Upstream is The Rationales greatest work to-date." "the entire band's devoted to executing on stage and playing to their strengths. The songwriting this time around is more collaborative. Singing duties are shared and there are some really shining solos in the live set which absolutely destroy audiences. (Editor's Note: Chad Raleigh is a New England guitar god!)" .... "The power of the live set is undeniable. I've witnessed it myself. In 2016, Adam Duritz and I selected the band to serve as International ambassadors for The Outlaw Roadshow tour - playing dates around the US and across the border in Toronto, Canada."
-Ryan Spaulding, Ryan's Smashing Life, 8/1/17

"When David Mirabella released his first CD with the Rationales 10 years ago, locals thought they had him pegged as a thoughtful power-pop artist in the vein of the sainted band Big Star."..."the Rationales are a lot tougher to pin down nowadays. Their new CD, “Upstream,” has its share of pure pop, but the songs are generally longer and the arrangements more surprising — with traces of prog rock, epic Americana and even some arena-rock grandeur. What hasn’t changed is the quality of Mirabella’s writing — he can swing a hook and coin a thoughtful phrase with the best." "The new album’s best track is actually its furthest stretch from straight pop: “Dulcinea” is a moody, six-minute track with a floating Pink Floyd feel."
- Brett Milano, Boston Herald, July 28, 2017


"The Rationales have burst through the summer of 2017 with their latest, and in the eyes of this music fan their best-to-date release, Upstream." ... "electrifying guitar work and summer day anthems" ...  "a genuinely independent sound that nods to the forerunners while maintaining a strong presence in their own skin. Fresh assemblies of a truly American sound, hinting off and on at moments of great 90s alt-rock, combined with shredding breaks and truly energetic, unrestrained releases. Upstream amounts to one hell of a record." ... "Upstream solidifies The Rationales. It feels as though everything they’ve worked for leading up to this album has, in retrospect, been a struggle to find themselves. Well, here they are. This is The Rationales I’ve been waiting for. This is The Rationales I wanted. This is The Rationales I didn’t know I needed in my life."
- NANOBOT Rock Reviews, July 2017


"It's official. It's 2PM on a Sunday in SoCal and The Rationales  new LP "Upstream" is the BEST thing I have heard in 2017."
"a lush rock sound"..."electrifying riffs and solos that are just jaw dropping. " ...  "With songs of loss, regret, nostalgia, and longing... you feel like you’re riding shotgun with Mirabella on the back roads in New England as he tells his stories." ... "the electrifying guitar opener, “Ready to Go” is driving, swirling with electronic sounds and heavy beats... the ripping guitar solo gets the adrenaline pumped up for the rest of the album." .... ““Trade You” takes the rhythm into Dire Straits territory. That infectious groove takes hold and refuses to let go. It’s easily my favorite off the album." ... “All the While” kicks things up a notch again. David Lieb shines on this track with his saloon piano styling. ".... "Another highlight was “Climb the Ladder,” The song starts with an Americana sound as it segues into a piano breakdown. Mike Mirabella’s vocals layered over the piano chords gives it a haunting touch. It’s slow moving, but that changes as it gradually intensifies into [Chad Raleigh's] screaming guitar solo"... "Right from the opener I enjoyed the anticipation of what would come next. Give it a listen on your next road trip excursion."
- On The Flipside Music (Los Angeles) July 2017


The Rationales have been a constant in northeast Americana Rock for the better part of the last decade and in that time the band have only gotten better at making heartfelt, blue-collar rock. At the core of the band is the songwriting of creator David Mirabella who channels the 'everyman' in his tales of love lost and tough times. The band has evolved to become a powerful delivery agent and the results can be quite stunning. The Outlaw Roadshow is excited to share the music of The Rationales Friday night 10/16 at The Bowery Electric in New York. This set is going to impress!
- Ryan's Smashing Life, October 2015


"With its energetic and up-tempo "All the While," Boston band the Rationales delivers an alt.-rock love song that's not just terribly addictive, but that comments as much on the song's persona as it does the relationship in question. "The night is distant with the porch light on," purrs one verse, "the cycle hum is growing quicker/I want to see you when you come undone/as you laugh, that you've known, all the while/I've been lucky all along." It's a brash and joyous song about losing one's self in another, but one with some great feeling buoying it, and with an energy that's difficult to ignore. The Rationales performs with Shotgun Waltz and Zerobot at 9 p.m. Jan. 30 at Ralph's Chadwick Square Diner, 148 Grove St., Worcester.
- The Worcester Telegram & Gazette (Victor D. Infante) January 2015

Indie rock/Americana greats The Rationales come out swinging with their new EP, a five-track assortment of everything that has made this band such a mainstay in the local music scene. The album is a lush, vibrant, and multifaceted collection of music that explodes with an energy that excites the ears and stirs the soul.
“Let It Go” shows the full range of the band’s spectrum of styles, opening with a soft, mellow tune and ending in full guitar-ripping, drum slamming, vocal onslaught of musical goodness. “Drunk All The Time” is a great opener with an old-school rock sound that provides a proper introduction to what this band is capable of.
Dave Mirabella (vocals, guitar) has a truly versatile voice, well-suited to being paired with an intense rock jam, but also able to slow things down when the songs take a more measured tone, which talented fellow band members Mike Mirabella (drums, vocals), Sean Black (bass, vocals), Chad Raleigh (guitar) and Dave Lieb (keys, vocals) help shape. There’s no final form to this creation, however—like the musicians who make it, this album isn’t contained within one genre or style, and offers something different to each listener.  
- The Noise Boston, (Max Bowen) April 2014


When you listen to a Rationales record you say to yourself "I bet this band is f***ing fun as hell to see live" and in thinking this, you would be right, because they are. Their new effort is no different, mixing the best parts of pop rock hooks and riffs with independent local goodness and modesty.
"Drunk all the time" is an upbeat (yet perhaps downtrodden themed) tune with some great make you want to sing along moments. Fun, fun, fun. Thats what the band is exuding throughout this new record. Head bopping, rump shaking, PBR slamming songs that you want to go catch at your favorite local rock club and have a killer night from start to finish.
"Radio" is a re-release and I loved it the first time around and again this time. It brings me back to that early teenage rock goodness. The song for me just feels very nostalgic. I don't know why because its not 20 years old or anything...but it just emotes something inside my head and heart I can't explain, mission accomplished boys.
"Let it Go" is the most reserved of the tracks. A bit scaled back in the noise factor. Probably the most solemn of the bunch. It shows the gents have a softer side and can (soft) rock a sad ballad like nobody's business. "Said it all before / with one foot out the door"
The EP strikes a different tone lyrically than what their listeners are perhaps used to. Dave Mirabella pours a lot of himself into some deeper and burdensome themes in his writing. As always, the writing is on point and the hooks are at top notch. The musicality dulls the edge of the cutting thematic lyrical context a little and in true Rationales fashion, the songs still come out with that really uptempo and fun feel. So, it all sounds happy! But, I do have to say, its great to see Mirabella finding an emotional release through song an exploring some of that darker territory. He absolutely succeeds in that realm.
Sonically, the record is what I have come to expect from these guys. The musicianship is top notch, its rock n' roll / Americana but their chord progressions and riffs are NOT run of the mill stuff and their choices are always creative, different and exciting. The lead guitar playing is excellent, the rhythm section is prime, and this line up melds together is such a sublime way that you know they are meant to play together.
I am not really sure what else to say to sum it up aside from I just like these guys. Its hard to listen to their music and not simply just enjoy the hell out of yourself.
Check out the boys on bandcamp to listen to this record, you won't be disappointed.
- Red Line Roots, March 2014

Review of Dream of Fire
Have I ever mentioned how much I like The Rationales? I think I have. Their latest, Dream Of Fire, is pretty fantastic. The EP opens with live favorites “Drunk All The Time” and “Radio,” a single they released back in 2012. It’s a formidable and familiar one-two punch of hooks and vitality. “This Morning” shakes up its Buffalo Tom-like vibe with fiery, spaced-out guitar solos. “Last Words” buries the dagger with the line “She won’t remember the last thing you said if you’re there.” Man. These songs are reeeeeaaaally good. The whole thing wraps up with “Let It Go.” Here’s a band so gifted in the ways of verse/bridge/chorus blowing it all up with magnificent results.
- Daykamp Music, March 2014

Feature from RedLineRoots
Dave Mirabella is probably one of the most loveable rock n' rollers in town. I've known him and his great band, The Rationales for a number of years and always been a fan of their catchy tunes that just make you want to dance. Its rock for the type of people who just want to have a damn good time. The fellas have a new EP out and so I caught up with Dave to answer a few questions and talk shop about the band and what the future holds (Read Interview here....)
- Red Line Roots, (Brian Carroll) Febrary  2014

Feature From Dig Boston:
David Mirabella first played his own songs “back in the early aughts” at an open mic night in Salem. A decade or so later, his band The Rationales has one full-length album, two EPs, and what was in my opinion a first-place worthy performance at the 2012 Rock ‘N’ Roll Rumble to its credit.  In December, The Rationales released the all-killer no-filler five-song offering Dream of Fire. The shows that they have played in support of the EP have included an unofficial residency of sorts at T.T. the Bear’s Place, where on Wednesday they will perform as part of a quadruple bill topped off by M.G. Lederman‘s CD release show. Mirabella connected with me via email to talk about himself, his bandmates, and his assorted musical more.
- Dig Boston (Blake Maddux)(February 2014)

Review of Dream of Fire
Clay: Let me be the first to give a hearty “welcome back” to the Rationales. After providing the seminal “summer rock” album The Distance in Between in 2011, the Bostonian quintet is at it again. But here’s the thing: I feel like they shed their feel-good power pop and put on their classic rock hats. This EP is edgier, darker, and bursting at the seams with hard rock goodness. Greg: Indeed, welcome back Rationales. I have been anxiously awaiting the release of Dream of Fire for some time. Thankfully the results lived up to the excitement. The Rationales come out swinging and it is evident that the time between releases only complimented the well planned, tight rock experience to kick off 2014.
Clay: Am I remembering things differently or does seem like a band that has entirely reinvented themselves? David Mirabella’s melodic tenor is still there, but a lot of that fun-loving Americana seems to have gone to the wayside. Their first single, “Radio,” is a chunky power-chord train to Awesometown. Along for the ride are some classic rock-infused keyboard backings and a Tom Morello-esque wah-wah bridge. Do they sound like they put on their tough-guy boots to you? Greg: “Radio” is more than just great instrumental also. They speak to music as a whole “The lights are on/so is the radio/its like religion in my soul.”
Granted these gents claim “Indie Rock with heaping sides of Powerpop and Americana” I would venture to say we are on the verge of something new. Something unknown. Something, dare I say, Nanobot. Does the sound encompass a large “tough-guy” presence? Sure. Is it Indie Rock? No. Is it Powerpop? Sorry Biebs, take a hike. Americana? Here’s where things get interesting. Dream of Fire is a new style Americana. It takes a very American rooted rock sound, hangs it by the feet and knocks the living classic out of it with a precise driving force that is on-your-feet entertaining. From Hook-laden “Drunk all the Time” to the dammit-I-want-more “Let It Go” the road is paved with raw rock tenacity. Clay: I don’t know as we are broaching a new genre, and I certainly don’t want to get into branding… hang on, let me check with my lawyer… yeah, no branding. It feels like Americana and pop, but like the band is dreaming of the AM radio instead of fire.
For those of us who grew up with a piece of tin foil on our radio antenna, this is not necessarily a bad thing. It is a warm, familiar sound to have each track punctuated with a face-melting and gut wrenching guitar solo. I could see “Last Words” performed at a high school dance any time from 1973 to 1993 and no one batting an eye. It is classic, and it is good.
Greg: Due to previous court orders I am prohibited from attempting this, but if this were on AM radio, it would set it on fire. In just five tracks it feels like classic is reworked. Not necessarily a worldly game-changer sense, but more like finding a door you never knew was there and discovering a wave of sound that is not only fun to ride again and again but it has the strength flow coast-to-coast. The immediate familiarity draws you in and the American Rock keeps you around. It is like a Snuggie of all things that make American rock great. Take that branding! Clay: Well, like the Snuggie™, I can only hope these guys get the same type of coverage national reach. Boston, I love you, but it is time to share this band with the rest of the country. The Rationales have harnessed all that is good about rock without any of its annoying quirks and tucked it into put out a fantastic little EP in Dream of Fire. Go get it now, or else I may make some more blanket puns.
Nanobot Rock Reviews, February 2014


Review of Dream of Fire:
The tunes demonstrate a healthy amount of pop prowess and warrant repeat listens. While Drunk All The Time is furthest up my street, I really enjoyed the alt. country leanings of Last Words.  A good bet.
- Make it a Thing, January 2014

Review of Dream of Fire:
The Rationales’ latest EP, “Dream Of Fire”, features 5 tracks and showcases the songwriting and skilled musicianship that make them a band that belongs on your radar. “Drunk all the Time,” and “Radio” are hard driving pop tracks that have plenty of melodic muscle. The remaining tracks allow the band their get denser, anthem-styled rock songs out. I look forward to more from this talented band in 2014.
Powerpopaholic, January 2014


Review of Dream of Fire
I hate year-end lists in mid-December. Rushing to publish them means excluding great, late stuff — namely the Rationales EP “Dream of Fire,”.... “It’s not your fault but I hate you when I’m sober,” the Rationales’ Dave Mirabella sings on EP opener “Drunk All the Time” — a heavy blow softened by the song’s bright pop and hot guitar solo. Before you can ponder the cruel barb, the band snags you with another sharp hook, then another and another. The five songs rock relentlessly through epic closer “Let It Go” with its downright nasty guitar outro. The Rationales will release the EP on Friday at their Sinclair show with the Sheila Divine and OldJack.
Boston Herald, December 17, 2013 (Jed Gotlieb)

Inclusion of "Drunk All the Time" on Twangville's Boston Playlist
It’s been awhile since we last heard from the Rationales. They teased us last year with a lone single but are now back with a vengeance. They are about to release a five-song ep, the first of three promised eps over the next 18 months. They band stretches themselves out with songs that, overall, are a bit heavier and more and intense than their earlier work. Yet their power pop heart still beats strong, as this powerhouse track demonstrates.
Twangville, December 12, 2013 (Mayer Danzig)

Review of The Rationales at Brighton Music Hall March 23, 2013
The show is sold out by this point, and BMH is packed. The Rationales play next, and something has clicked for these guys since I saw them about a year ago. They've always been good, but they sound especially great tonight. Everyone around me seems totally entranced by the music-this is not the half-paying-attention-while-texting kind of crowd. At the risk of sounding like a nerd, I feel reminded that this is what it's all about-why I wile away my weekends by getting tinnitus at dimly-lit rock clubs whilst my peers are downtown drinking Bud Lights from aluminum bottles and getting hit on by dudes in flat brim hats. This is good rock n roll. This is Boston.
The Noise, May, 2013 (Emily Diggins)

Review of The Rationales at Brighton Music Hall March 23, 2013
Next up were the Rationales, a band I was somewhat unfamiliar with. Luckily, all of their songs were so catchy that I had little trouble getting into the groove. The steady stream of Sam Adams probably helped too. But although I was primarily at Brighton Music Hall to see a few bands before the Rock N' Roll Rumble, I was pleasantly surprised at how much I wound up loving the Rationales.
Blending the best pop sensibilities with incredibly catchy songs and rocking riffs, the Rationales wowed the audience with several new songs, including the slower, slide guitar tinged "Dulcinea." Frontman David Mirabella's vocals rang out over the crowd as the simple drumbeats and lap steel provided just enough Americana twang to make this song an instant singalong.
The rest of their set was much of the same: infectiously catchy songs that you couldn't help but jam along to. Other songs that stuck out to me were the crashing cymbals and soaring guitar licks of "Under The Gun," the piano-filled "Tongue Tied," the straightforward bass-driven, clap-worthy "Jaded," and, of course, their epic 2012 jam, "Radio."
It was pretty easy to see why these guys made it to the semifinals of the last Rock N' Roll Rumble.
Allston Pudding, April 10, 2013 (Adam Parshall)

Preview of The Rationales' Show, Brighton Music Hall, Mar. 23, 2013
We don't limit ourselves to a single genre - you know you have Guns N' Roses, Willie Nelson and Britney Spears on your iPod. With this in mind Rationales frontman Dave Mirabella and Broken Toy Edrie Edrie put together a wild, wonderful local bill for Walter Sickert's CD Release show."Edrie and I had talked about how great it would be to build a bill that reflected the way people actually listen to music," Mirabella said. "A bill that formed a sort of dotted line you can follow through a bunch of different styles." The result is Walter Sickert and the Army of Broken Toys, the Rationales, Ruby Rose Fox, and The Field Effect, Saturday at Brighton Music Hall.
The Boston Herald, March 22, 2013 (Jed Gottlieb)

Inclusion of "Radio" on WFNX's Standout Jams of 2012
The Rationales "Radio" -- Boston rock veterans continue to deliver hook-laden songs immune from trends or fickle demands.
The Phoenix - December 27, 2012 (Michael Marotta)

Preview of Live Appearance at Bayside Bowl, Portland, ME, Nov 2012
 Hailing from Boston, [The Rationales] come packed with a punch of blues rock,  country twang, heavy hits, soulful vocals, and they will be in Portland Saturday night with When Particles Collide, and Yes We Kin at Bayside Bowl.  Here is why you don’t want to miss these guys. David Mirabella, the front man.  The guitar guy.  The man who plays his music with such passion you feel it coming through in the way he delivers a line on the guitar, or how his lyrics fit beautifully with the melody.  He finds a way to make their sound so easily accessible for the listener.  Their music reminds me of the late 90's early 2000's.  A time when I was finishing up school, and it seems like the soundtrack that would accompany the video of my life (if I had cameras following me around at all times).  There are the memorable choruses, that make you want to sing along after only hearing it once, or the oooohhhhh section that everyone loves to sing at the top of their lungs.  An introduction to a song that gets your toe tapping, head bobbing, hips swaying, maybe a little jumping up and down?  That’s what these guys will bring with them on Saturday night.  Take a listen to their music, but trust me on this one, the live show is amazing.
- Bangor Daily News, 11/9/2012 (Chris Viner)

Preview of Live appearance at New England Americana Festival 2012
Next week, the New England Americana festival returns for a third straight year. And for a third straight year, it is expanding. The festival found a home at a Fenway night club for its first two years, and while there, went from a single night of music to three. For 2012, it has moved across the river to Cambridge, and will sport a lineup of around 50 acts spread across three nights and multiple venues. The big-tent view of organizers John Colvert and Noel Coakley is reflected in the diversity of acts playing the festival this year. Here are a few examples. THE RATIONALES This five-piece injects as much muscular power pop as rootsy alt-country into their music, making for a sound that’s loud, taut, and electric. (Saturday 9/15 at Tommy Doyles, Harvard Square, Cambridge, MA)
- Boston Globe, 9/7/12 (Stuart Munro)

Live Review of show 8/19/12 at Club Radio, Somerville, MA
Next up was The Rationales, my personal choice for the winner of WZLX’s 2012 Rock ‘N’ Roll Rumble. The Wooden Sky’s lead singer Gavin Gardiner, described them as “One of my favorite reasons to come to Boston.” And for an increasing number of fans of local music, the inclusion of The Rationales on a bill is as good of a reason as any to get out and see a show. Sunday night, the band’s unforced and irresistible power pop was in full force on songs like the as-yet-unreleased “Drunk All the Time,” “Jaded,” from their 2011 CD The Distance In Between, and a song that singer/guitarist David Mirabella said was “written for this club” as his was “the first band to play here.” The title of the song, their most recently released one, was, simply enough, “Radio” (click for free download). The Wooden Sky’s taking of the stage was delayed by what was an apparently unexpectedly troublesome soundcheck. But the transition from Airport and The Rationales to the headliner was something of a change of season, which is sometimes itself a bit unsmooth. The music of the two Boston bands had a much shinier surface than the more autumnal tones of the quartet from north of the border. Therefore, it was perhaps all the more appropriate that one of the lyrics in The Rationales’ “Tongue-Tied” (also from The Distance In Between) was “the summer’s finally over.” Given the fact that it actually almost is, The Wooden Sky’s songs felt just right.
- DiggBoston 8/22/12 (Blake Maddux)

Live Review of show 8/3/12 at the Middle East, Cambridge, MA
Following a strong showing in this year's Rock 'n' Roll Rumble, it wasn't much of a surprise that the Rationales would go over big at the Middle East upstairs last Friday. Dishing up power-pop, sometimes with an Americana tint, the five-piece were making their debut appearance at the venue, a highlight on a strong bill that also featured the Susan Constant, When Particles Collide, and the Self-Proclaimed Rock Stars.
The Rationales ramped up the energy in the room from the start with "No Guarantees," from their 2008 EP The Going and the Gone. But it was "Drunk All the Time" that kicked it up a notch. The title pretty much sums it up, and, creeping past 11 pm, a well-lubricated Cambridge crowd — even those hearing the song for the first time — were singing along loudly by the second chorus, holding Narragansett tallboys high.
Led by singer and guitarist David Mirabella, the Rationales have spent the past five years honing a sound that has created some of the most accessible melodic rock around. A great deal has been made about this year's single, "Radio," and deservedly so — the song is fantastic. Mirabella keeps getting stronger as a songwriter, as made evident by new songs like "Little Bit." He is a big man in a lot of ways, but his actual physical size is difficult not to comment on, since it actually arouses concern. At the Middle East, he spent the entirety of his show using a stool for support. "Music has always been a form of escape from my issues— but the problems with the weight are now creeping in on that," he said solemnly after the show, addressing the issue of weight and health. "I know people are worried. . . . I'm trying to correct it." Here's hoping Mirabella does, because the Rationales' songs are already larger than life and full of promise.
- The Boston Phoenix, 8/7/12 (Michael Chistopher)

Feature: The Rationales Are Rocking into the Spotlight
The Rationales ply those time-honored rock 'n' roll staples, potent melodies and dynamic guitars as they rock the Boston area. The quintet's music crosses many boundaries, with elements of Americana, mainstream arena rock, power pop, alternate rock, or what some have termed "radio rock," but whatever it's called, audiences have responded. In April the Rationales surprised many by advancing to the semi finals of the 2012 Rock Rumble, that venerated local showcase pioneered by the late WBCN.
More recently, the band released a new single, "Radio," and it's already won a notable plaudit, voted 2012's Local Song of the Year on Salem State College's WMWM. Last year, the Rationales released their debut full-length album, "The Distance In Between," and even that was proof of their burgeoning popularity, because when the band got bogged down in the expenses of recording, they started a Kickstarter fan-funded campaign, and were amazed at the number of fans who helped out.
{Read the full Article here...}
- Enterprise News (Brockton Enterprise) July 27, 2012 (Jay Miller)

Live Preview for show 7/18/12 at Cafe 939
One of the best songwriters in Boston, David Mirabella's The Rationales have become one of the city's best live offerings. On the new one; The Distance In Between, the alt-country and Americana influences for these audio aficionados shines through. But it's in the live shows where you see the awesome guitar, bass and drums reinforce the rock trapped inside those songs. The Rationales are one fun live act - proven with their victory on Night One of this year's Boston Rock 'n Roll Rumble.
- Ryan's Smashing Life

Live Review: The Rationales at Precinct June 22, 2012
Great songs have always been a trademark of The Rationales. Saturday night these guys added a couple of new gems to their setlist. I immediately fell in love with “Let It Go,” a song that wouldn’t sound out of place on side two of Abbey Road. Keep an ear out for that one.
(Note - there is a Great Photoset at link)
- DayKamp Music, June 2012

Live Review: The Rationales at T.T. The Bear's Place Rumble Semi's Night 2, 4.13.2012
TT’s—which seems to have added a bit of space since the last time I was there—had filled up steadily. This gave batters #3, The Rationales, a crowd that they truly deserved. After a wish of “Happy birthday, Dave” to lead singer David Mirabella, the band dove headfirst into a set of vibrant, sparkling, custom-made for TT’s-type-venues power pop. All of the essential elements of the genre were perfectly in place: Sunny vocal harmonies, check; crunchy distorted guitars, check; a steady thumping bass, check; and stomp-your-foot-to-the-beat drums, oh yeah! These were they type of tunes that you want to learn the words to before they were over so that you wouldn’t miss the chance to sing along.
- Dig Boston, April 17, 2012 (Blake Maddux)

Live Review: The Rationales @ T.T. The Bear’s Place Rumble Night One, 4.1.2012
When a good rock n’ roll band finds its groove, it’s a wonderful thing. It becomes as much about what you feel as what you hear. I feel good right now. I just heard something great. It was a wonderful thing. The Rationales just played their Rumble preliminary set. By the time they got to “No Guarantees”, a personal favorite of mine, they were so locked in nothing could derail them. The last three songs of their set felt like a victory lap. That’s the beauty of the Rumble. Win or lose, bands rise to the occasion. Bands like The Rationales. My gut is confirmed. The Rationales take night #1.
- DayKamp Music, April 2012

Live Review: Rumble Night One Coverage
After stepping outside for a breath of air and wet Cambridge pavement, I came back in and was toasted up by The Rationales, a five-person Boston outfit with true songwriting chops and a sound even fuller than its size suggested. Their songs, alt-rock with a touch of country, rely on a balance between vocal and poetic grit and warm guitar and synth tones, and find beauty in that contrast, like in dust eddies in the sun. Sunday night, the rest of the band kept a tight orbit around frontman David Mirabella, who leaned himself on a stool and his guitar on himself, and leaned the weight of a long life on his voice even as he mined that life for lyrical details. Lead guitarist Pete Ziegler channeled Mirabella’s pain into bluesy guitar solos that brought him to the lip of the stage, while bassist and backup singer Sean Black provided sympathetic company on the mic.
The band is obviously taking off – and it’s easy to see why. I can find some of their choruses in my head after just one listen, and a sizeable chunk of the crowd at TT’s did me one better, yelling the words to “Jaded” and “Drunk All The Time” and filling out Mirabella and Black’s already rich two-part harmonies. The Rationales ended up winning last night, so be sure to turn out to see them at the semis later this week. You’ll know nine or ten more songs by the time you leave.
- Ryan's Smashing Life, April 2012 (Cara Giamo)

Live Review: [Rumble Night 1 Recap] The Rationales triumph @ T.T. The Bear's Place
The Rationales are not a country band. I’m not even sure if they could be called “country influenced.” Still, they made me wish I was driving an 18-wheeler across the Midwest, or perhaps engaged in a Thelma & Louise style road trip where I'd stop at every liquor store I passed, have all my money stolen by Brad Pitt, then explode after driving off a cliff. Though they’ve unquestionably penned a few great songs, particularly set-closer, “Radio,” their easy-accessibility makes them the exact kind of band I don’t want to win. They’re not dangerous enough to offend my parents. I need some legit EVIL in my rock ‘n roll.
- The Boston Phoenix, April 2012 (Barry Thompson)

Let's get ready to 'Rumble'! Local bands set to compete in a Boston tradition
“Having been to a lot of Rumble shows over the years, the one thing we know is that what everyone expects or plans on is going to go out the window,” said David Mirabella, singer and guitarist for Rumble competitors The Rationales. “We’ll just play as best we can and have as much fun as we can.” The band, which Mirabella formed via Craigslist in 2007, put out their first full-length album, The Distance In Between, last year and recently released a new single, “Radio.” The band describes their music as “American rock ‘n’ roll," Mirabella said, but “people tend to lump us either as power pop or Americana[, which] we’re fine with.” Although they've never played in a Rumble before, The Rationales are no stranger to the event or Boston Emissions. They’ve been attending Rumbles for years, “so when we put out our record last May, we really pushed to hope that radio stations were aware of it,” Mirabella said. “When the time came for the invitations, [Wood] reached out to us, and we were very excited about it.” The band is looking forward to competing against “heavy-hitters” like The Grownup Noise, Cooling Towers, and Parlour Bells, Mirabella said. “It’s basically anybody’s game.” Read full article...
- By Angela Stefano, The Next Great Generation, on, March 2012

The Rationales meet Danielle Miraglia - Q&A
In 2011, two releases that caught my ear were the Rationales (who play TT the Bears 4/1 at the Rock 'N' Roll Rumble) and Danielle Miraglia. I like both of these artists because they are honest--in the case of the Rationales, honest American radio rock, and in the case of Danielle, honest blues-oriented coffee house folk. Finding music that comes as advertised is harder and harder to do these days when it seems like the tempting thing to do is build 10 band websites (, bandcamp, etc) before even making an album. But both the Rationales and Danielle Miraglia start pretty humble and build it up from there. On Sunday 4/1, the Rationales will greet listeners with songs from The Distance Between in an unlikely bill with Endless Wave at the 2012 Rock 'N' Roll Rumble. Recently, I asked Danielle and David Mirabella from the Rationales to give me their thoughts on each others records. Here is what they had to say: Click here to read more.
- Inbound Sounds by Jonathan Donaldson on, March 2012

The Rationales - "Radio" (single)
In their watershed 2011, Clicky Clicky Top 10ers The Rationales showed they could write heartfelt pop tunes with an eye towards Americana and good old American rock and roll. Apparently not willing to coast too far into the new year on that great self-release The Distance In Between, they're back already with their hot-off the interwebs single, "Radio," and it's killer. A taut rocker with a catchy big-ass hook and soaring refrain, "Radio" rocks harder and more directly than anything they've done to date. Go get it below, and clear this Friday night, March 9th, for when The Rationales celebrate its release at the club that apparently inspired it (though it's not about it, exactly) - Union Square, Somerville's Radio.
- Clicky Clicky Music Blog, March 2012

The Rationales - "Radio" (single)
Well, The Rationales have done it again. The band went into Q Division with producer Ed Valauskas and came out with a top notch recording of a killer song. The Rationales debuted “Radio” at the opening of the club it shares a name with. They were rightfully giddy in doing so. They knew that had a scorcher on their hands. The song is a blistering rock number, shedding much of the Americana that the band is usually tagged with in favor of a driving beat, fuzzed-out bass and jagged guitars. The Rationales continue to evolve as a band while maintaining a knack for writing a good hook. It’ll be fun to hear what they come up with next.
- Daykamp Music, March 2012

The Rationales - "Radio" (single)
“Radio” stays true to its broadcast roots – or at least the message implied in its title – with a quick two-part “news flash” phrase on the guitar. This motif continues through the entire track, only pausing to give way to the flow of the chorus. Other instruments do appear in the mix, but their roles either stem from the guitar motif or balance it out.
A soaring, liberating bridge punches a blazing fist through the center of the track. Like most fiery punches, this section leaves a mark in the song giving you cause to pause and say, “Ah yes, that totally fits.” Which maybe you don’t usually do about fiery punches. The bridge is a true study of the compositional notion of the bridge; being something totally different in the middle, yet still having parts that fit well with the thing(s) that it spans.
While the guitar takes its place in the forefront of the song, the other parts make us realize that maybe they are all the forefront. A grinding, grumbly bass supports the principle motif, and a Wurlitzer in the verse and spacious, well-voice organ chords complete the keyboardist’s play for a sponsorship from Clavia. And I hope he gets it, because damn, those things are expensive.
- Boston Band Crush, March, 2012 (C.D. On Songs)

The Distance in Between (The Rationales)
Sweaty, working class, well-rehearsed indie rock is as old as the’80s, but its uncanny how the old dog snaps to attention whenever thrown a good bone. The David Mirabella-fronted Rationales are as Boston as Fenway Park, as classic-sounding as a Friday at the Rat, and as reliable as a hot mug-a-chowdah. On The Distance, one perceives a species of big sounding Beantown past, pieces of Big Dipper, Dumptruck, early Del Fuegos, Dogmatics, Lemonheads, Lyres, early Neighborhoods, ’90s Dinosaur Jr., and especially Buffalo Tom’s (whose leader Bill Janovitz cameos on backing vocals) mix of R.E.M. roots with heftier guitars. Like the Jayhawks and Windbreakers, the group uses heavy and light guitars simultaneously with busy piano and a tight, non-flashy, supple rhythm section, playing strapping verse/chorus/verse/bridge structures. Not everything has to be novel; it just has to be good. (Jack Rabid)
Jack Rabid, Big Takeover, Issue 69, November 2011

Live Review, Topsfield Fair, Oct 2011
It’s a Monday night at the wonderful Topsfield Fair and the regular weekend mob is not in attendance. The Rationales have played the fair the past two years and both times it rained. The usual five-piece band is a six tonight as they’ve added Davina Yanetty on ukulele to strum along with their well-written power pop tunes. Leader Dave Mirabella on guitar and vocals is a song designer, most evident in “Drunk,” which brings craftsman Jules Shear to mind. The tune “Braedon” has a They Might Be Giants feel with some strange catchy lyrics about a bee dressed in an army suit stealing popcorn. Then “Tongue Tied” blends the Grateful Dead and Tom Petty, with a Neil Young-style guitar solo supplied by Pete Zeigler, thrown in to solidify the band’s good taste. The meshing of the many influences creates the band’s own gritty rock sound. Halfway through their set the rain gods baptize us to extend the band’s consistency of weather to a third year. By the end of the set bubbles are floating around me—the gods must be happy. (T Max)
- The Noise, Boston

Live Review, Club Radio, Oct 7, 2011
"The Rationales" (Boston) are the first band to ever hit the stage at Radio and in all their opening night glory wrote a song specifically for the bar entitled "Radio". With catchy tunes, a pop-alt sound and jammin' harmonies, The Rationales blew away the already full venue with their music. A testament to the night to follow, The Rationales put on a show that many will remember for times to come. If anyone didn't know who they were before, they sure do now and I would imagine that this band will be seeing an influx of new fans over the weeks to come.

Stockbridge to Boston - A Sampler by Twangville
I find it humorously ironic that my DC-based comrade Tom brought this release to my attention. Why ironic? Because the band in based in Boston and regularly plays clubs in walking distance from my house. That said, I’m glad that he did. These guys know their way around a power pop hook, serving ‘em up by the barrel with choruses that stick in your head for days on end. Don’t believe me? Listen to this.
- (October 2011)

Americana Meets Phil-Spector
The Rationales have been going since 2007 but are a new name to me. The backbone of their sound is a heady mixture of West Coast harmonies and jangly guitars that owe more to Teenage Fanclub than the Byrds or Tom Petty but that's certainly no bad thing in my book. Somehow their overall pop sound steers just the right side of edgy to keep the songs interesting and even, 'grown-up' in a way many of their contempories fail miserably.
It makes a very pleasant change to listen to an album that celebrates tunes and melodies rather than the dour floppy fringed miserabilist nonsense that the majority of young Americana bands churn out these days. Singer and lead guitarist David Mirabella has a lush dreamy voice which lends itself to the Spectorish production (lots of layers and treble) and has had me coming back for more as I drive around the highways and byways on the recent sunny days.
Another Moon, Tongue Tied and the piano led opening song Real Life stand out from the crowd like poppies in a wheat field but it's Still We Believe and its luscious harmonies, crashing choruses, Hammond solo and punchy guitars that will makes its way onto my MP3 'Sounds of the Summer' mix. There are a score or more of bands trying to recreate this sound at the moment, but the Rationales pull it off and sound as if they have a big future ahead of them.
4 stars (out of a possible 5)
- Alan Harrison, Maverick Magazine, September 2011

Bostonians set the controls for melodic power-pop thrills
Boston-based The Rationales' debut long player hits the ground running, with the sat-nav definitely set for left-field power-pop nirvana. However, instead of that genre's inherent aural sweetness, The Rationales have insisted on keeping a natural handful of grit in the mix.
Their sound throughout these ten precise songs is always very richly melodic, with organs, chiming guitars and harmonies lacing each track with enough to get the incisors firmly stuck in to. Whilst they don't sound startlingly unlike anybody else in the musical stratosphere, their textured melodic rock, fizzes with an energy that becomes increasingly difficult not to let yourself wholeheartedly sink into.
Crafted with vigour and sharp tunes, a lot of the material has a brash power-pop aesthetic coursing through it, however they do mix in a little bit of pleasing discomfort. The irresistible 'Braedon' takes the stock power-pop ingredients, then adds a touch of Costello’s brash melodic cadences, and a splash of Pavement-esque alt-rock left turns to proceedings, though never enough to throw it off its A1 full-speed course straight to joyous indie-pop thrills.
Head Rationale, and Guitarist/singer/songwriter David Mirabella sometimes comes up wanting in the vocal department (the otherwise spot-on 'Jaded' and 'Burned Again' being prime offenders) but somehow adds a little cursory edge to the feel of the record. Guitarist Kevin McMahon sings his own excellent 'Try to Tell Me' which has the album’s most swaggeringly rootsy feel, and a chorus that is designed to be shouted back at them in arenas. Elsewhere 'Slower/Faster' shows off a liking for distinctly anglicised-indie and is all the better for it, with its rich melodies and precise, affecting chord patterns.
'The Distance In Between' is an impressive display of crunchy guitar pop. This particular rationale appears to be almost spot-on.
-Ian Fildes, Americana U.K. August 2011

There are few things as enjoyable seeing as a good, old-fashioned rock ‘n roll band in a small venue, surrounded by friends with a cheap beer in hand. Luckily, the Rationales are set to bring their straight ahead American rock the Rosebud stage tomorrow night. Masterful songwriters, their music is layered and carefully crafted. Their power stems from their ability to rein themselves in, to not allow the songs to wander out of the territory they’ve set aside. They keep their boots mostly planted in the hooky, melodic rock that’s served them so well over the years; at times they’ll drift closer to the Americana or power pop end of the spectrum, but it always self-corrects at just the right moment, preferring to live in the area between their two great influences.
-Richard Bouchard, Boston Band Crush, August 2011

"A couple of lineup shifts haven’t shaken the Rationales’ approach in crafting what they’ve come to do so well: finely wrought, lushly layered pop that sounds effortless in its execution.
On the band’s breezy yet burnished full-length follow-up to ’08’s “The Going and the Gone’’ EP, singer-guitarist David Mirabella drives the quintet — which now includes brother Mike (Scamper) on drums, Sean Black (the Eines) on bass, new addition Pete Zeigler (Hey Now, Morris Fader) on guitar, and founding keyboardist Matt Goldfield — through 10 tracks that tackle what the title promises. Winning tracks like “Tongue Tied’’ and “Burned Again’’ explore the emotional as well as physical spaces that mark the distance between getting from here to there (whatever your emotional “there’’ may be), while others (“Another Moon,’’ featuring Buffalo Tom’s Bill Janovitz on backing vocals) take stock of the places you end up. “Real Life,’’ which opens the album on a strong note, examines both sides of the equation with a power pop flair fringed with alt-country detail."
-Jonathan Perry, The Boston Globe, May 13, 2011

A fine hooks-and-harmonies power-pop band...
-Brett Milano, Boston Herald, May 13, 2011

Swirling pop, empathetic vocals in front of strong Americana-influenced rock; that's the creative footprint on this new record. And then there's the songwriting! Who hasn't lived out a heartache or asked questions of a starry sky? Behind these thoughts; building bass, guitar and drums drive us home... The Distance In Between is the new creative flag in the sand for Boston songwriter David Mirabella and his band, The Rationales.
Listening to the record this morning, once again - in anticipation of their near capacity album release tonight at the Lizard Lounge, I realize this is one of the best songwriting outfits in New England music today. The Rationales’ previous release, the EP “The Going and the Gone,” was described by the Boston Globe as one of the finest local releases of the year in 2009. Mirabella has a way with words - carefully crafting the language of his soul. That transference works very well with the help of the band; founding member Matt Goldfield (keys), Kevin McMahon (guitar), Sean Black (bass), Mike Mirabella (drums) and Pete Zeigler (guitar).
The Distance In Between was recorded and produced by David Mirabella and Q Division maestro Ed Valauskas (Eli 'Paperboy' Reed, Juliana Hatfield, Graham Parker, Jenny Dee). The album notably contains a special appearance by Buffalo Tom's Bill Janovitz - singing on "Another Moon." This new effort, from start to finish is one that belongs in your record collection. Highly Recommended.
- Ryan's Smashing Life, May 14, 2011

I hope my ration is huge, because this lush, slightly strange, totally charming pop is delicious!
- Roctober Reviews, July 2011

There are always bands in the world’s musical rotation that are considered the next “big thing” or that release the “must hear” music. Typically these bands are nudged aside for the next as this circle progresses without any concern for how much someone may have liked it.
Equipped with an immense amount of raw talent, a genuine dedication to their passion, and a following of fans that would not let them fail The Rationales are on deck to release The Distance In Between. Ten tracks of pure rock which dances around the edges of southern rock, 90’s vibes, and all around feel good music. This is the kind of album that makes you, as a fan, happy to experience.
It would be an injustice to the power of music if I failed to express my awe in how this album came to fruition. Utilizing the amazing power of fandom they appealed to the masses to help fund this sophomore release via Kickstarter, a site devoted to helping artists fund their endeavors.
These five Bostonians, I’m positive, are the type that would make your jaw hit the floor live. Particularly common in their appearance, their music is anything but average. I’ve found it quite difficult to narrow down which song should be broken down and analyzed as they’re all just as fantastic as the rest. “Jaded” is an all encompassing display of the purity of rock that has been tapped into on this album. “Another Moon” takes off with a mellow guitar riff pairing in a naturally feeling harmony with the vocals. Capping off the album with “The One You Wanted,” I’m left with a completely satisfied emotion that only leaves me wishing it were more than 37 minutes. Well laid out guitars, purposeful drumming, and smooth harmonies is the basis for this retro feeling new rock album. Nothing is over done or attempted that seems out of place or too much for these East Coasters.
In today’s environment of ambient rock and crazy layered tracks, The Distance In Between is a breath of fresh air. With an album like this, all one can see is a long successful future of great music.
Rationales is a “must hear” band. The only difference is you’ll find yourself struggling to nudge them aside for something else.
- Greg, Nanobot Reviews, June 2011

If I had three words to describe The Distance In Between by The Rationales, those three would be “just in time.” The power-pop quintet from Boston, MA has released their first full-length album one week after the start of summer. Their hooky and catchy brand of Americana lends itself to a sun-soaked day but is not rife with bubble-gum pop sensibilities. Guitarist/singer David Mirabella brings a level of maturity to each song with his songwriting and his vocals add soberness that plays well off of the other members of the band.
The Rationales as a whole tear through their 10 tracks, jamming out the entire time with some great 4-chord pop-rock songs. Each song has a basic structure with levels of backup vocals, keyboards, and rhythms that are well-layered and has the listener discovering something new with each listen. That is a true joy as an audiophile: to put in your headphones, listen to a song you’ve heard a hundred times before and say “Oh, I’ve never noticed that one fill the drummer does there.” Most of the tracks have giant hooks in them that get your hands or feet tapping to the beat and looking to restart the album after it is over.
The worst part is that these guys make it look easy. The jerks. They fool us into thinking we can pick up instruments and create tight and polished tracks like “Jaded” and “Try To Tell Me.” All we need is a keyboardist and some backup vocalists and we can have people dancing at the local VFW hall! The Rationales may have tricked us, but that is a testament to their playing and recording ability. I curse that ability every time I fumble over a D-chord on my acoustic guitar.
It could be that these guys have just tapped into the teenager in me that grew up in Maine on a steady diet of 90s alternative and 70s rock and seventeen year-old me would love to use Mirabella’s line “I’ll be the one you wanted” to a pretty girl. It would be foolish to think that everyone had the same experience I did, and that The Rationales’ Americana rock would reach everyone. But it would be tragic to miss what these guys from Boston are dishing out. Their music is very accessible without pandering to the lowest common denominator.
At the end of the day, that’s really what I want from a summer album. Check out The Distance In Between for yourself on their website and buy it to play for your friends. If you live in the Boston area, go see them in concert. If you don’t live near Boston, encourage them to come out. Even though they’re jerks for making rockin’ out look easy, they make it sound good, and seem like really nice guys. And if there is any sub group of musicians that needs to be supported in this country, it is the ones who temper their talent with being down to earth.
- Clay, Nanobot Reviews, July 2011

David Mirabella is de flamboyante zanger en songschrijver van de Amerikaanse rockformatie ‘The Rationales’ uit Boston, Massachusetts. Samen met broer Mike Mirabella op drums, Sean Black op bas, Kevin McMahon op gitaar en Matt Goldfield op keyboards probeert deze band al sinds hun oprichting in 2007 om een bredere bekendheid te bereiken in de hedendaagse rockmuziekwereld.
Typisch Amerikaanse rootsrock die gemixt wordt met powerpop is de sound waar ‘The Rationales’ voor hebben gekozen, weliswaar met veel aandacht voor het behouden van een vlot in het gehoor liggende melodie en met her en der wat leuke gitaarriffs.
In 2008 lieten ze voor het eerst van zich horen met hun ep “The Going And The Gone” wat toen vooral als een visitekaartje werd aanzien voor hun allereerste volwaardige full-cd die nu op de markt is gekomen onder de titel “The Distance In Between”.
Voor de opname van dit album hebben ze twee gastvocalisten uitgenodigd met de vrij onbekende 25-jarige zangeres Roni Pillischer die meezingt op het nummer “Burned Again” en de veel breder bekende Bill Janovitz van de alternatieve rockband ‘Buffalo Tom’ die backing vocals verzorgt op het leuk swingende nummer “Another Moon”.
Het overgrote deel van de songs op “The Distance In Between” werd door leadzanger David Mirabella geschreven met uitzondering van “Try To Tell Me” waarvoor gitarist Kevin McMahon tekende voor zowel de compositie als voor de zangpartij.
Er zit behoorlijk wat afwisseling in de nummers op dit debuutalbum, alsof deze band daarmee wenst aan te geven dat ze met hun sound niet onder één bepaalde noemer willen worden samengevat. Pure en krachtige rocksongs als “Real Life”, “Braedon” (very much à la ‘Rolling Stones’), “Jaded” en “Still We Believe” worden mooi afgewisseld met meer rootsy rockballads als “Burned Again” en “Tongue Tied” of heel melodieuze nummers als “Try To Tell Me”, “Slower/Faster” en de catchy afsluiter “The One You Wanted”.
“The Distance In Between” is een veelbelovend debuut van een zeer Amerikaans klinkende band ‘The Rationales’ die hun mosterd haalde bij bands als ‘The Jayhawks’, ‘Wilco’ of bij de eerder al vermelde Bill Janovitz en zijn groep ‘Buffalo Tom’. Dit is alleszins een leuk groepje om in de gaten te houden.
(valsam), Rootstime, Belgium, June 2011 Translation below:

David Mirabella is the charismatic singer/songwriter of the American rock group 'The Rationales' from Boston, Massachusetts. Together with his brother Mike Mirabella on drums, Sean Black on Bass, Kevin McMahon on guitar, and Matt Goldfield on keyboards, this band has worked since its establishment in 2007 to achieve broader notoriety in the current rock music world. 'The Rationales have gone for a sound which mixes straightforward American roots rock with power pop, while carefully crafting seamless melodies punctuated by enjoyable guitar riffs. In 2008 they released their first EP "The Going and the Gone" which served foremost as a calling card for their first full-length CD which is now available under the title "The Distance in Between". For this album they've invited two guest vocalists: the fairly unknown 25-year-old singer Roni Pillscher who accompanies the group on "Burned Again" and the far better-known Bill Janovitz of the alternative rock band 'Buffalo Tom' who provides backing vocals on the lively "Another Moon". The vast majority of the songs on "The Distance in Between" were written by lead singer David Mirabella, with the exception of "Try to Tell Me" which guitarist Kevin McMahon wrote for the group. There is quite a bit of variety in the songs presented on this debut album, as if the band wishes to give the sense that their sound cannot be contained within one particular label. Pure and powerful rock songs like "Real Life", "Braedon" (very much in the style of 'Rolling Stones'), "Jaded" and "Still We Believe" are beautifully interspersed with more rootsy rock ballads such as "Burned Again" and "Tongue Tied" or really melodious songs like "Try to Tell Me", "Slower/Faster" and the catchy closer "The One You Wanted".
(valsam), Rootstime, Belgium, June 2011 (Translation by Pammeke van der Feest)

The debut album "The Distance in Between" is full of promise for the very American sounding band 'The Rationales' which has been inspired by bands like 'The Jayhawks', 'Wilco' or by the above-mentioned Bill Janovitz and his group 'Buffalo Tom'. This is in every sense a really enjoyable group you should keep your eye on.
Boston-based pop rock outfit The Rationales are poised to impress their brand of music on you with their latest, “The Distance In-between”. Following 2008’s EP, “The Going and the Gone”, “The Distance In-between" represents a significant step forward into territory singer-guitarist David Mirabella knows well – a land populated with sharp hooks, groovy harmonies, smart lyrics, and uplifting melodies.
It is really difficult to identify the cream of the crop on this record as so many of the songs contain moments worth talking about. But at the end of the day, the tunes I wanted to go back to immediately including the simmering opener, “Real Life”, the breezy “Burned Again”, and Tom Petty-flavored “Slower-Faster”. Most of you will probably be able to spot the distinctive vocals of Bill Janovitz (Buffalo Tom) punching up “Another Moon”. I actually found “The Distance In-between” to be one of those records that gets better towards the end. Most bands stack their best right up front, but in my opinion this record starts off reasonably good then gets great. Case in point: the gritty and inspiring “Still We Believe” is a fantastic example of how much heart goes into their music.
“The Distance In-between” is a quantum leap forward for The Rationales – a terrifically cohesive record that is sure to please fans of pop rock that have a closet fetish for a pinch of alt-country. Should you check out this band? To not do so would be…illogical.
iPOD-worthy: 1, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9
- BMF, May 27, 2011

The Rationales singer/songwriter David Mirabella may be in a permanently depressed state, but fortunately he's managed to keep it a secret from his band, who prop up his introspective songs with the sturdy Americana of Tom Petty's Heartbreakers and the chiming jangle of early REM. The resulting hybrid - a rootsy, melancholic power pop - sounds so immediately familiar that it could be easy for some listeners to overlook if they don't take the time to appreciate the finer details in the band's arrangements. Whether it's a contrapuntal keyboard figure in opening track "Real Life" or the arpeggiated lead in the pop perfection of "Jaded", the Rationales aren't afraid to disrupt their own smooth surfaces by forcing the instruments to spar for attention, and it's exactly that aspect that sets this Boston band apart and above from so many like-minded ultra-melodic moody popsters, from the Gin Blossoms to Teenage Fanclub. Give The Distance In Between some time to sink in, and you'll be rewarded with a magic beyond its obvious hooks - and hey, those hooks by themselves should be strong enough for an army of positive reviews, it's just that there's much more going on here than a casual first listen might suggest. This is the very definition of a grower.
- Un-Herd Music

Led by lead singer-songwriter/guitarist David Mirabella, The Rationales have become a local favorite in the Boston music scene. Having settled into a more complete lineup, Mirabella and co. are excited to celebrate the release of the local rockers’ new album, The Distance In Between, this Saturday at the Lizard Lounge in Cambridge. With that in mind, we thought we’d catch up with Mirabella to discuss the new album, the show and the state of The Rationales. Click below for Interview...
- Boston Music Spotlight

The Rationales new CD The Distance In Between is a lively batch of songs dripping with sweet pop-rock melodies. Hooky choruses are the order of the day on this disc. Band leader David Mirabella has a mild, pleasant timbre in his rangy vocal and he conjures warm feeling in each song with his tender vocal applications. “Real Life” opens the CD with as much as a song could have. On “Braedon” Mirabella’s clever lead guitar walks hand in hand with Matt Goldfield’s perky keyboard melody. With a vocal timbre made for these pop songs, Mirabella is just on this side of roughness. His slight edginess allows him to cut through to the top to please the ear with gentle vocal pokes in his lyrics.
“Jaded” is down tempo but exquisite in its use of dynamics and accents. The guitars have snap, crackle, and pop, bracing against each other just enough to create dynamic tension in the instrumental passages. There is a gentle attitude behind all of the songwriting that makes these tracks accessible, inviting. “Another Moon” finds its glow in the frisky keyboards and its edgy, spiky guitar break, the song weaving together like a complex jig saw puzzle, every small part had to be in place for it to work so well. “Try To Tell Me” is the obvious hit single here. The hooky chorus has the perfect balance between two warm voices and the guitar melody is particularly catchy.
Mirabella and his boys are true craftsmen. A lot of care went into “Slow Faster,” a song with true pop assembly and the way the chorus get greased by Mirabella’s soft timbre breathes lots of life into it. Likewise, the lead guitar in “Tongue Tied” asserts itself at the right moments to prolong the drama in the music. The pretty guitar break can carry you away to a pleasant daydream of a brighter day, and it is refreshing to hear, for the first time in years, music that can inspire happy feelings. “Still We Believe” makes us believe in a good hook after we hear this song. Mirabella sustains the vocal notes just long enough to inject a solid hooky catchiness. It is his, and his band mates’, sensitive restraint that makes these songs work.
“The One You Wanted” is made up of contemplative lyrics delivered in a lilting, sing song manner that draws you in with the subtly of a children’s lullaby . Mirabella’s oh so smooth voice just lightly touches the ear drum with its gentle sweep across the vocal melody, making the listener feel like he’s having a conversation with a close friend. Bass player Sean Black, drummer Mike Mirabella, and guitarist Kevin McMahon are all perfect partners with Mirabella and Goldfield, keeping each song individualized as well as catchy and dynamic. The Rationales are the perfect Boston pop rock confection for the summer of 2011.
- Bill Copeland Music News

We last heard from this Boston band a few years ago with their fine EP The Going and the Gone, and here's their equally impressive full-length debut. Once again David Mirabella & Co. straddle the line between power pop and Americana, and if you like bands such as, say, I don't know...The Riffbrokers? you'll love this one. Opener "Real Life" builds from its rootsy verses to an anthemic ending, "Braedon" packs more punch in its sub-2:00 running time than most songs do in 4, and the rocker "Jaded" recalls Being There-era Wilco. And don't miss the chiming, jangly "Tongue Tied", the latest and greatest entry into the fellowship of "summer is over" songs. You won't have to rationalize picking this one up.
- Absolute Powerpop, May 2011

The Rationales have taken their Wilco, Tom Petty and Big Star influenced sound and injected it with a hefty dose of late ’90s indie rock in the vein of Buffalo Tom, Teenage Fanclub and Matthew Sweet. What do all of those acts have in common? Great songs. So it is with Dave Mirabella and his bandmates. The Distance In Between is a damn fine record. “Tongue Tied” and “Another Moon” both have a nice mid-tempo feel. “Braedon” and “Jaded” ratchet the energy up a level. “Still We Believe” is anthemic. Spot on backing vocals and melodic guitar lines compliment every track. The production is excellent. Like I said, a damn fine record. Guitarist Kevin McMahon takes over lead vocal duties on one of my favorite tracks, “Try To Tell Me”. This song was driving me crazy. The overall sound reminded me of another record I couldn’t place. Finally I realize that the song sounds like it could have come from John P. Strohm’s criminally overlooked Vestavia album. That’s good company to keep. I’ll leave you with this snazzy lyric from “Slower-Faster”: Cut it live or multi-track it, Either way it’s made of plastic. I love that. - DayKamp Music, May2011

The Raionales had an impressive EP years earlier, and here is a more mature full LP. "Real Life" is a great opener with its faux blues guitar riffs and lush orchestration... "Braedon" is the albums' early standout here, with singer-songwriter/guitarist David Mirabella wailing the chorus "Hey little B, dressed up an army suit where you going with my popcorn?" The song is just infectious and the distorted riffs just drive things along. Other tracks are equally impressive, like "Jaded," and "Another Moon" with Mirabella's distinct vocals taking center stage here (an acquired taste...). And no filler here either. More gems here include "Slower-Faster" and the summery "Tongue Tied". Solid roots syled power pop that fans of REM, Tom Petty and Jayhawks will treasure.
- Powerpopaholic, 2011

"Somewhere between roots-rock and power pop, with some swell vocal harmonies. Veteran producer Ed Valausksas stitches it all together nicely. If I were in a quibbling mood I’d say some of these songs are stretched out a tiny bit more than might be optimal, but the under-two-minute “Braedon” certainly isn’t; it’s my fave. Other highlights include the very solidly catchy “Another Moon” and “Tongue Tied,” which feels like a classic AOR summertime radio hit that I somehow never heard before. Overall this is a consistently solid effort."
- i hate the sound of guitars, 2011

"A swell of organ here, a dollop of slide guitar there, sparkling pop tunes all around. All of those elements - not to mention last year’s disarmingly excellent debut EP, “The Going and the Gone,’’ which proved one of the finer entries in the local music sweepstakes - are the calling cards of a quintet that expertly blends power-pop guitar crunch with a dash of country-rock flavor. What more of a rationale do you need to check them out?"
The Boston Globe, November 2009

"Not sure where this bunch popped out of (ok, I think it was the Boston area) but this guy David Mirabella and his crew have released a damn good ep here. There's only 6 songs which is a perfect taste (I love eps!) and they do a nice mix of rock/pop tunes along with some alt-country on some others. The opener, "Guardrail" is the former with some sweet hooks and perfect tension while "No Guarantees" sounds like prime Elvis Costello with a slight Americana influence in there. "Far Away" evokes some classic Old 97's with a thumpa dump beat and feathery backing vocals. "Cliché" rocks a bit hard and has a cool opening riff sounding like it was straight off a True West record and "Ruby Colored Halo" is where they go full bore with the gorgeous pedal steel, gentle vocals and sweet acoustic guitars. Not sure if they have a full-length in the can but I hope so because they sure sound ready for it. In the meantime pick this up, you won't be disappointed."
- Dagger Zine, 2008

"Each song is a multilayered hook-fest with carefully constructed instrumentation and vocal balance that makes it one of the better power pop albums you’ll hear this year... subtle background vocals to the simple yet effective guitar work to the overblown keyboard-bordering-on-organ sound adds layers that create an irresistible mix of swirling ear candy."
- Northeast Performer Magazine, 2007

"Whether it is a full melody that soars out of the haze or the echoing of twangy country-style guitar riffs, The Rationales from Boston put together a sound that is complete and finished. On their debut release, “The Going And The Gone,” The Rationales let themselves do some rocking and rolling with reserved pop rock while still keeping things classy and smart."
- Plug In Music, 2007

"With an exuberant blend of pop, rock, and Americana seamlessly intergrating with their inherent indie spirit, The Rationales are poised to make their mark in Boston and beyond."
- They Will Rock You, 2007

"A cool mix of Big Star- and Kinks-like poppiness and Wilco- and the Jayhawks-inspired rootsy jingle jangle. My ears were like putty in their hands."
- Captain's Dead, 2007

"The Going and the Gone kicks off with a confident, luxurious mesh of guitars on 'Guardrail,' followed by the boisterous bounce of 'No Guarantees,' ... [and] sustains this wave of raucous, infectious energy throughout."
- Easily Fooled, 2007

Longtime readers know I have a soft spot for bands that bridge the divide between power pop and alt-country, and this Boston band has done just that on their debut EP. "No Guarantees" is the track that hooked me in, and it manages to fit influences as varied as Wilco, The Old 97s and Big Star into its 2:14 running time. Also worth the price of admission are the instantly catchy "Far Away", the jangly "Cliche" and the pedal steel-drenched closer "Ruby Covered Halo". If this sounds like it's up your alley, it would be downright ir-Rationale to pass on this EP.
- Absolute Powerpop, 2007

"The Rationales hang on to what makes a great record: chords that count, melody, backing vocals!, straight ahead, earnest, punchy rock, with solid vocals, intelligent guitar. The Rationales are finding new respect for pop in the here and now, with real songs played from the heart."
- Chris LeRoy, Songwriter: Cracker/The BellRays/The Dangers

"Sounding like Whiskeytown meets Tom Petty with a bit of The Rolling Stones thrown in, The Rationales. just finished the debut EP The Going and The Gone with six tracks. The Americana roots based group stradles the line between pop and rock without really planting their feet firmly in each genre for long. "Guardrail" is a Wilco-like mid tempo number with an inventive bassline and backing organ that drives the melody to a lush chorus. Another great pop song here is "No Guarantees" - it has the power pop bounce and twang that Rhett Miller and Old 97s did at their poppiest. This continues into the awesome "Far Away" with a ghostly harmonomic in chorus and Mirabella's vocals are very Jagger-like here. The catchy driving rhythms are also on the song "On the Vine" - it compares well with Wilco's "Summerteeth"-era roots pop. I really look forward to a full album from The Rationales, as this is an excellent EP."
- Powerpopaholic, 2007

The music by The Rationales is great. No no... lets use a better word then great... how about, Honorificabilitudinitatibus. (meaning "the state of being able to achieve honors." The arrangement of each song is full. They have a wall of sound approach without all the doubling and the album sounds great! If pop music, the Stones and alt county were to get mixed with the band the Oneders... You might approach the sound of the Rationales... but really just think Wilco. oh, and if you don't know the Oneders(pronounced Wonders); Tom Hanks will come stab you in the ear with an ice skate. Go check them out live... Make sure to yell Honorificabilitudinitatibus at the stage.
- Boston Music Reviews, 2007



For Hi-Res Photos,
One Sheets & other Press Materials Please Scroll down.


  • UPSTREAM named best of 2017 by Twangville, Ryan's Smashing Life and more.
  • "Ready to Go" nominated for a BOSTON MUSIC AWARD as "Song of the Year", Sept 2017
  • The RATIONALES nominated for a BOSTON MUSIC AWARD for "Best Americana Act" Sept 2017
  • "Ready to Go" on U.K. Internet Radio top 10 week of 9/11/2017 & 9/18/2017
  • New Record "Upstream" released on Aug 3, 2017 at the faned Cambridge, MA club the Middle East Downstairs.

  • "Take a Ride with Me"  played for 37,000 fans on Ballpark Organ at Fenway park during Red Sox vs Twins on June 27, 2017 by Fenway organist Josh Kantor.

  • "Trade You" featured on 2016 NoiseTrade Compilation.

  • Opened for acts including: The Smithereens, Rhett Miller (Old 97s), Rich Robbinson (The Black Crowes), Jeff Tweedy (Wilco), Johnny Hickman (Cracker), Bill Janovitz (Buffalo Tom),  Aaron Behrens (Ghostland Observatory)

  • Played venues inlcuding The Blue Hills Pavilion (main stage), The Sinclair, Middle East Downstairs, Bowery Electric (NY), Mercy Lounge (Nashville), Cameron House (Toronto), UG3 (Toronto), Verb Hotel/Boston Music Awards, many fairs and festivals and more.

  • "Dream of Fire" named among the top 14 albums of 2014 by Ryan's Smashing Life and appeared on "BEST OF" lists The Boston Herald, and Summer Aviation

  • "Radio" Named '2012 Standout Jam of the Year" - WFNX Radio - Boston Accents

  • "Radio" Voted '2012 Local Song of the Year' - WMWM Salem Radio Listeners Poll

  • The Rationales were semi-finalists in the 2012 Rock n Roll Rumble, Boston, MA

  • The Rationales "The Distance in Between" appeared on several "Best of 2011 lists including Twangville, Clicky-Clicky, Nanobot and more.


Hi-Res Photos

The Rationales Band Photo 2017 Photo by Danny LeBlanc
(Click to download)

Press One Sheets:

Dream of Fire Press One Sheet Download the UPSTREAM 2017 Press One Sheet

Dream of Fire Press One Sheet Download the Dream of Fire 2014 Press One Sheet

Distance In Between press One Sheet Download The Radio Press 2012 One Sheet

Distance In Between press One Sheet Download The Distance In Between 2012 Press One Sheet

download one sheet Download The Going and The Gone 2008 Press One Sheet

CD Cover Art:

Dream of Fire (EP 2013)
(Single 2012)
The Distance In Between(LP 2011)
The Going and The Gone (EP 2008)