EP Review

EP Review: Take The Ride // The Chris Ruben Band

With a reputation for energetic and engaging performances, The Chris Ruben Band is one of those bands that own a stage as soon as they step on it. Drawing together elements of funk and rock, the US-based six-piece can ensnare a person’s mind as easily as owning a stage. Formed in late 2014 by Chris Ruben (vocals and guitar) and Brendan Allan (bass), the band soon gained a level of notoriety in their local scene. Now, they are turning heads on a global scale receiving critical acclaim from international blogs like Turtle Tempo, Red Rock Magazine, The Other Side Reviews and many more. The latest addition to their discography is Take The Ride.

Following their well-received single ‘Tell Me You Love Me’, The Chris Ruben Band adopt a funk meets rock sound in their EP Take The Ride. Opening with the title track, Chris Ruben and his crew showcase a contemporary quality in the melodic arrangement. Filled with powerful guitars, pounding drums and Chris’ gritty vocals, there is a reminiscence to the pop-rock sounds of the 90s. Yet, while a pop-rock style is certainly evident, the classic rock guitar solo highlights the slice of old-school tones in their modern-day music.

Followed by ‘Held So Tight’, the opening bass immediately sends you off on a rock-inspired glistening river of sound. While you are set adrift on a seemingly calm sonic river, the tumultuous waves below are portrayed by the outstanding guitar riffs in the latter end of ‘Held So Tight’. What I love about this album is the harmonic arrangement of instruments and vocals. Each instrument appears to have a prominent position, however, they all come together in a well-textured whole.

Ending with ‘Tell Me You Love Me’ and ‘What I Need’, the lads’ transition to a highly funk whirlpool in Take The Ride. With rich, bold vocals, Chris leads the group through the kaleidoscopic soundscape. Once again bringing a contemporary edginess to an older style, ‘What I Need’ in particular adds a sentimentality and obscurity to the EP. It’s fun and light-hearted but with an overall madness that sticks in your head from the word go.

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