May 12, 2017 marks the release of Ruby Bones’ self-titled debut album. The trio of vocalist/guitarist Chris Nova, bassist FC Spies, and drummer James Janocha is sure to be a must-see performance in the upcoming summer of 2017. Ruby Bones comes at you hard with energetic riffs that can’t stop and won’t stop throughout the entire album. Typically, you’d be told to buckle up for a ride like this, but there’s no fun in that. Get on your feet and get ready to jam the fuck out!
After listening to Ruby Bones, Nova’s guitar will be ringing in your ears for days. The jangling riffs have an almost light-heartedness to them until combined with the heavy bass and Janocha attacking the drum set with a ferocity typically reserved for a Facebook comments section. This album’s a god damned rocker with rhythm that’ll make even the stiffest of the crowd shake what they momma gave ‘em. But while the album is so upbeat, there remain a lot of darker undertones. Some are more obvious than others, with track titles such as “Bad Bad Blood,” “Heart of Darkness,” and “Reaper,” but where Ruby Bones truly excels is in their ability to create so much substance beyond fun, danceable tracks. These songs are surprisingly personal, thoughtful, and detailed with such universally true and relatable themes of love, loss, and learning to accept all the changes that come throughout life.
Still, listening to this album just has this effect on me that’s hard to describe. I imagine going to see Ruby Bones play through this album in its entirety, probably at some trendy club in the city. Pretty good night by all accounts. It’s fun, there’s energy. I’m drinking, a lot; I’m buying shots for strangers; we toast to life and semi-hollow body guitars. I dance with a pretty girl during the set, but when it’s over she leaves and I don’t get her name. I leave the bar; I’m very drunk. I pick a fight with a homeless guy, “Bad Bad Blood” still ringing in my brain; we each land some good shots and then we realize we shouldn’t be fighting. We find some 40’s of OE; we find a park bench; we talk out our differences; his name’s Boxcar Tim; we become good friends; we share some blow; the night’s still young. I find a strip club, still hearing “You I Want.” I leave Boxcar Tim behind; he’ll be fine. I ask a dancer for a private dance, the expensive kind; I talk about my father; I’m not crying, you’re crying! Cinnamon and I are falling in love, but I hear the lyrics of “Into the Night” and Chris Nova singing “I’ll be alright/ No, it’s not fine/ What the hell did I say?/ Into the light/ Drowning the night/ It doesn’t mean anything.” I know I have to leave. I go back to the trendy club, looking for answers, looking for Ruby Bones, but wait, could it be? I approach the girl with no name. Shocked, I say, “You’re Still Here?” She begins to apologize but I stop her. “No, don’t tell me you’re sorry,” I say, as if it came to me in a song, a song written by Ruby Bones. We agree to part and go our separate ways, knowing deep down in our hearts that we’ll be reunited again someday, by Ruby Bones’ second album, which I am already getting anxious thinking about.
But, in the meantime, enjoy the debut album from Ruby Bones. I hope it invigorates and excites you as much as it did me.
Adam gave man-birth to N.J. Racket and is as close to an "editor-in-chief" the site has. He's a god awful photographer.