The Brooklyn-based quintet Rubblebucket
, who've been kicking around since 2007, have the unique distinction of making music that’s nostalgic for an extremely recent moment in indie rock. That moment (pretentiously pushes glasses up on nose) was called “Blog Rock,” a theatric brand of synth-driven guitar rock that flourished thanks to the rise in prominence of MP3 blogs like Pitchfork and Stereogum in the early- to mid-aughts. And while, yes, enough time has passed that bands like Tapes n’ Tapes, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, and the Black Kids, who plied their trade making similar music as Rubblebucket, now seem to be a part of an era
of music rather than living, breathing entities, it still feels like the genre’s placement in the canon arrived too soon.
Apparently Rubblebucket agree with that sentiment, because their fantastic fourth full-length album Survivor Sounds (
released late last August) hasn't really given up the ghost of that early millennial sound. And as someone who came of music appreciation age during the Blog Rock epoch, I couldn’t be happier. The record is full of loping, glitch carnival synths, static-y power chords, the occasional awkward horn section and the hushed, child-like vocals from lead singer Kalima Travers. Lead single “Carousel Ride” is so quirky, and misshapen, and 2005, mentally picturing it playing on an old Myspace audio player is far too easy. Lead track “On the Ground” is a dead ringer for any Rilo Kiley b-side, while “Sound of Erasing” sounds as if it could have fit in nicely on the Garden State
soundtrack. All in all, the album is remarkable for how pleasantly familiar Rubblebucket is capable of sounding. For anyone ready to get all gooey about that time in their lives when indie rock seemed like it was going to change the world--
a time that probably doesn’t
seem like it’s more than 10 years ago now-- Rubblebucket’s upcoming show at the Rex on Nov. 1 can’t miss. (1602 E Carson St, The South Side, The Rex Theater