Last year, Brooklyn-based art-rockers Rubblebucket released their fourth studio album, Sun Machine, what we at Paste heralded as a “joyous breakup album.” The breakup at hand was that of the band’s two primary members, Kalmia Traver and Alex Toth, who had been romantic partners for 11 years prior. As their relationship came to an end, their music surged: Sun Machine is wacky and cathartic in all the right ways, some of their best work, even though it emerged out of a dark time.
Almost two years before the release of Sun Machine, Rubblebucket were still promoting their 2014 album, Survival Sound. On this day (Jan. 9) in 2016, Rubblebucket, with a mini orchestra of musicians, stopped by the Paste Studio in New York to play a few songs from that record, “Carousel Ride” and “On The Ground,” plus two songs from their 2017 EP If U C My Enemies, the title track and “Donna.”
Their session morphed into a full-blown party. With a stand-up bass, horn section and saxophone, plus frontwoman Traver’s uproarious stage presence, all vying for your attention, you don’t really know where to look. But it’s heaps of fun to watch—and to listen to.
Watch Rubblebucket perform “Carousel Ride” and “On the Ground” in the Paste Studio circa 2016 below. Further down, watch their return to our studio in 2018. While you’re at it, read our recent interview with the band.