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Chris Ruben Band
Credit: Chis Ruben Band
I sort of giggled when I first heard that Long Island’s very own The Chris Ruben Band partially referred to themselves as “psychedelic”. That’s because it’s a word barely if ever used in the music industry anymore, so their sound immediately caught my eye for all the right reasons.

The five-part band has been rocking several stages for years, in and out of the area of New York that I used to call home. Their recent single “Stomach Coil” is an this talented group navigates themselves through the rock world in eventual hopes of being on your radio station/streaming service one day.

I spoke with Chris himself about how the group came together, their sound, what’s to come, and more.

The word “psychedelic” is partly used to describe your overall sound. Are you worried that the younger generations don’t even know what that word means? 🙂

It’s funny because the genre we often give to promoters and bookers is “psychedelic/funk-rock” and its really because they often ask me (Chris) and those are probably my three favorite genres of music. The truth is we have elements of psychedelic, funk and rock in our music but it really isn’t that. each song jumps genres and embodies different influences from all different styles and time periods. What we have been working on now together is combining everyone in the groups influences which span far broader then my own to create something modern and fresh to safely guide humanity into the future.

I bring that up as its a classic word and your group is influenced by the classics that date back to the 60’s. Is that expressed in your music?

It’s definitely expressed in the arrangement and the energy of the performance, but our overall sound and set up and as far as how we engineer our music it is only mildly expressed. Anyone who is into that kind of music will be able to hear it.

How did you five get together and what’s the process been like as a group overall?

It has spanned over the course of 3 years when it comes to our current lineup being altogether. Myself (Chris) and the bassist (Brendan Allan) have been together the longest although Brendan started on drums! It took us about 2 years and 4 and a half people to connect with our current drummer, Russ Benjamin.

He has helped accelerate the groups progress with learning all our pre-written material and being an embedded member of the musical community on long island. We also have Frank and Eugene Iovine who collectively have been with us since 2016. They are identical twin brothers who are engineer graduates from Ithaca with extreme talent. They both add a significant flavor to the band that creates a bigger picture audibly both live and in the studio. The process of late has been re-arranging the music that was pre-written and recorded by myself and then re-recording it together. We are excited to begin working on all original music together as a team in the coming year.

Do you feel like Long Island doesn’t get enough recognition regarding the artists that have come out of it?

In all honesty there is a ton of talent on Long Island. Truly untapped potential. But what it really needs is someone to take charge. Somebody that has earned respect and has credibility that the artists will listen to because while the talent is here, the direction and capability for them to reach further than our backyards is beyond difficult. The organic reach some of the bands have gotten from going out on their own to other places is just a fraction of the work and exposure that a lot of these people really deserve.

I know you released a single back in October called “Stomach Coil.” What’s the song about?

The song is an attempt, lyrically, to make us take a look at ourselves. It’s common knowledge that history will repeat itself if different measures aren’t taken when it comes to civilizations and tyranny. We have seen it before and we will certainly see it again if we do not band together and have more of an interest in our world and the way that things work… myself included.

Any plans on releasing new material this year?

We have a lot in store for this year and early mid spring. There will be a lot more about that. We have a nice chunk of new material, all recorded in the post production process at the moment, and we are very excited to begin promoting our release.

What else do you have coming up tour wise?

Right now, other then Froggy Daze and a few other small dates, we are taking time to focus on rehearsing and writing new material. We are most interested in creating something memorable and special before we make plans to hit the road.

For more information on The Chris Ruben Band, click here.