Hard Decline EP by Eva Rubin Review
OK, we admit it. We’re a little late to the party with this one. When our team of highly skilled, highly paid and highly fictitious researchers here at Rated Sound unearthed this gem, we thought we’d introduce a sparkling new talent. However, we noticed that this excellent Hard Decline EP by Eva Rubin was, in fact, released way back in 2013. Fictitious researchers – never believe in them. So you’ve probably already heard of this talented singer-songwriter but just in case you haven’t….
The Hard Decline EP release was in fact preceded by a full album in 2012, King for a While, watch out for a review soon. For this EP, the vibe is very much alt-folk/alt country with superb sympathetic backing from the musicians listed as: Dave McNamara (guitar/bass/drums/vocals), Jackson Shelton (rhodes/vocals) and Russ Barnett (vocals). Eva Rubin also plays guitar however the star turn here is Eva Rubin’s voice. Convincing and strong throughout, pure with just the right tone of worldly wisdom to add weight to her words.
Before You Know is a fine opener with subtle beginnings while the instrumentation slowly builds with acoustic guitar and a keyboard. The Hard Decline EP delivers the first of it’s many hooks and by the time the song has got the chorus the third time Eva’s voice is soaring. Soaring but controlled, this isn’t the X-Factor here after all! A classy beginning to the EP.
Borrowed Home is a short acoustic track reminiscent of Scraps at Midnight-era Mark Lanegan. “Life’s a borrowed home for every man”, we are told before the title track kicks in. The Hard Decline EP hits a peak with it’s title track. It’s not quite as instant as some of the other material on here but give it a couple of spins and it seeps in.
No Way shows it’s folk music influences and alludes to a tale of someone having suffered an embarrassment. No way to hide – haven’t we all been there before?
Trouble is the EP’s rocker with brushes replaced by drum sticks on this upbeat number. The electric guitar is allowed to let off some steam here and Eva and the band sound like they are having fun with lyrics about “trouble in mind/stomach ache”.
Album closer When We Leave is a slow acoustic number with a shuffling drum brush beat and moody descending bass and electric piano. The lyrics are thoughtful and intelligent, as they are throughout the Hard Decline EP and they leave plenty for the listener to interpret.
A couple of questions spring to mind at the end of Eva Rubin’s Hard Decline EP: 1. How did it take us so long to discover this? 2. Why isn’t there any more music available after this release? We can’t do anything about the first question but hopefully a new Eva Rubin release is imminent.
Rated Sound gives Hard Decline EP by Eva Rubin a rating of 8/10.
Hard Decline EP (2013) by Eva Rubin Track Listing
1.Before You Know
6.When We Leave