Live Review: Rub

The Tractor Tavern Seattle, WA 

Contact: [email protected]

Web: rubsounds.com

Players: Princella Ray, lead vocals; Malia Seavey, keyboards/synth, backing vocals; Taryn Dorsey, percussion, backing vocals; Robbie Luna, guitar; Shaun Crawford, bass; Bob Husak, drums. 

Material: Rub is a mega-band comprised of Pacific Northwest-based artists who have been fixtures on the Seattle music scene for several years (Acid Tongue, Trick Candles, Salt Lick, NighTrain, Killer Workout, Cute Lepers, and Panama Gold). The group’s live set tilts toward disco-tinged sensibilities (Nile Rodgers & Chic) complete with similar guitar sounds and basslines made famous by Nile Rodgers' slick production (Sister Sledge's “We Are Family,” Daft Punk and Pharrell Williams’, “Get Lucky,” Duran Duran with Janelle Monae’s, “Pressure Off”).  

Musicianship: Lead singer Princella Ray’s vocal timbre is smooth and warm. Her high range evokes hints of Shelia E., which she projects with ease in the band’s live arrangement of “Contentment.” Guitarist Robbie Luna’s flanged-out guitar techniques slide in well with the band’s ‘80s style material, while elements of The Minneapolis Sound (Prince’s “Delirious”) are brought to light by keyboardist Malia Seavey’s super-poppy synths and percussionist Taryn Dorsey’s plethora of rhythmic instruments - tambourines, egg shakers, and cabasas. 

Performance: Huge boxes with bright colored letters spelling out R.U.B. served as perfect props for the Seattle-based sextuplet. Needing no introduction, Rub immediately walked across the Tractor Tavern’s stage and burst into their electro-pop show. The group’s prismatic selection started with “Rob’s Song” and “Leave it Behind” before they moved into the measured “Keep Up with The Vibes,” a reflective song describing dogged perseverance in a personal world gone awry. The band shifted into high gear for the sparkling “Hands Up” and KEXP song of the day “Contentment” before ending the show with a slight curveball, a cover of Phantogram’s “When I'm Small.”  

Summary: Rub is a band that draws inspiration from a wide range of old-school and new-wave genres. The band has great potential and could easily further explore their darker musical tendencies—therein lies the Rub. Look for Rub making rounds throughout the Pacific Northwest!