Q&A with: Rubblebucket

If you haven’t seen yet, Rubblebucket will be making their only stop in Georgia on their upcoming tour in Macon on Thursday, February 9th with local favorites JuBee & The Morning After, Atlanta’s Baby Baby, and youngsters Triathalon from Savannah. I was able to catch up with Alex (Toth) from Rubblebucket before the band headed out on the first leg of their tour and we chatted about being friends with Grace Potter, the end of the world and much more. Check it out and RSVP for the show!

TBI: I first heard about you all after friends came back from Grand Points North raving about your set and what a “oddly entertaining” group they had discovered. What relationship do you guys have with Grace & her band that linked you up with the fest?

Alex: We are both Vermont-born bands and Kalmia and Grace are VT bred divas. We both developed a lot of our early sound in Burlington. Apparently Grace new a lot of the words to most our songs so thats really awesome! Our old bass player did a tour w/ Grace + I used to play with Benny their guitar player a bit. It’s a family… sorta! 

I noticed that you all have gone through a number of members in the past. Is the band more so a collective of musicians that cycle in and out or is the current line up firmly set in place?

Current line-up is pretty firm. We’re all down!

That being said, what are the methods to how you all compose and write your music? Do Alex & Kalmia approach the rest of the band with an idea and then it’s expanded upon or do you all each have a fairly broad input on each track?

It varies but largely Kalmia and I write most of the stuff at home and occasionally in the studio. Everything that touches the band in rehearsal or stage gets expanded upon and develops though. All the guys are pretty sick at their instruments and creative. 

How many times have you all played in Georgia and do you find that there are any noticeable differences in the audiences in the South than elsewhere in the county?

We’ve played in Georgia once. Haven’t played the south enough to site the differences. The one show we played was with Baby Baby at Drunken Unicorn and it was an awesome, high-energy grungy-punky vibe that felt pretty right. We were at this fest in VA and around all the campfires people were shredding bluegrass guitar and singing beautiful country-folk songs. Seemed like everyone in the audience had ears and could play guitar! 

There’s a clear influence from groups like Talking Heads and the rest of the ’70s-’80s new wave crowd, as well as a more recent likening to Dirty Projectors and TuNe-YaRds. Who would you cite as an influence that your listeners might now expect?

Hard to say. I think we sort of stay tapped in w/o copping an style from any one artist or movement. Been listening to a lot of gangster rap from the late 80s recently. It’s simultaneously blowing my mind and referring me back to my earlier musical funk and soul loves like James Brown. 

You all were a staple on the festival circuit last year. What can be expected in 2012 that you all are looking forward to?

Right now Neil from Terror Pigeon Dance Revolt! is in the common area of my apt making ‘robot envelopes’ (for ease of packing) for these 14ft robot puppets. Also working on a large ‘love tunnel’ and audio-reactive light-up vests for the whole band. Oh, and new music! As far as bookings not sure what the full plate is going to be… but looking forward to our first Miami performance at the Grassroots Festival.

 Lastly, does Rubblebucket believe in the Mayan predictions, and if so, where will your end of the world party be?

Yes but leaning towards the expansion of consciousness aspect of their prediction… hopefully it manifests for the better and its not just some weird Facebook blurring. If the flood-gates start opening though it would be sweet to have a big Burning Man-esque community party on the top a mountain surrounded in a rich self-sustaining eco-system. It’s the year of the Dragon though… good things!!!