Between Splendour sets and a nationwide tour, The Rubens just released their sophomore album Hoops. The album comes after a three-year wait by fans that flocked to the infant band after the release of their smash hit single Lay it Down in 2012.
With their distinctive tones and small town charm, the five-piece from New South Wales are gearing up for their 22-date national tour to hit the Gold Coast in late-October.
It may have been a while between drinks but to be fair, they were pretty busy. Between albums the band has officially gained a fifth member, toured various countries, hopped around the festival circuit and grown into their unique brand of bluesy, alternative rock.
Hoops shows off the band’s musical diversity that appears to have exploded between albums.
“We’ve been exposed to so much more music through touring and going to live shows and festivals over the past few years,” says Elliott Margin, keys player and vocalist for the band. “More than we could ever have imagined.”
Including hip hop influences that were the basis for the first single Hallelujah and are no so subtly hinted to on the album’s black, gold, and finger watch adorned cover art.
In addition to their now fully-fledged fifth member William Zeglis, the band has added guitar solos, shakers and “tons of foot pedals,” into the mix.
“We thought a lot more about sounds. Zaac bought a whole bunch of new pedals for his guitar, so we did a lot of experimenting with sounds which was a great writing tool,” says Margin.
The production of Hoops came in a similar fashion to the production of their first self-titled album; both were predominantly written in Australia and recorded in New York with producer David Kahne. Despite its parallels with their first album, Hoops is a more energetic, complex and mature render of the well-known Rubens sound.
Perhaps the greatest departure in this album is its anticipation. When the band first came to success in 2012 their fast-rising profile left little time for hype. But according to Margin the ‘second album nerves’ aren’t getting to him.
“I think we are all just excited. We are definitely more confident in this album,” says Margin.
“We are happier with this one overall. We were definitely more involved this time.”
After touring their first album for two years the band began to seriously compile the album early last year finding their time on the road had led to a flood of creativity.
“We ended up with about 35 tracks for the album that we had to cut down.”
With another two years of touring ahead, getting this album right for the road was the most important part.
“How it plays live is always in the back of our minds. We spend a lot of time playing these songs on stage so we want them to sound good.”
“It was hard at times: really hard. I think we just wanted to do something that we were proud of and make something we would want to go back and listen to.”
The Rubens second album Hoops has just been released Get your Copy Now! The band is also kicking off their national tour later this month details available at www.therubensmusic.com