The 5th studio album by Rubblebucket is one which dedicates itself to honesty and transparency. It’s extremely open, from vocalist Kalmia Traver’s battle with ovarian cancer to Alex Toth’s three year struggle with alcoholism. In spite of these struggles, their music remains optimistic, not intended to induce pity, but instead spreads a message of hope.
The album was inspired by the breakup of an 11-year relationship between the two members, Traver and Toth, and feels like you’re stepping into a dreamworld. Their personal relationship might be complicated but it bears a fruitful creative spark and a sound which is unlike anything in indie rock. It’s light and fluffy but carries weight. In that it aptly captures what it means to be an indie pop band. Each song is very distinct and unique, with very little repeating sonic textures.
Perhaps what is most interesting in this album is the use of saxophone and other jazz elements in an indie rock setting. This is combined with aspects of disco, psychedelic, and pop, it’s impossible to predict which turn the next song will take. When listening to the record, it makes sense to find out that the duo both have backgrounds as jazz musicians. The record isn’t the strongest of 2018 but it might be among the most unique.