Reuben and the Dark Horseshoe Tavern, Toronto ON, June 12
Published Jun 13, 2013One of the most buzzed-about bands of NXNE, Reuben & the Dark attracted a large crowd of early 20-somethings early in the evening, the majority undoubtedly there after hearing of their recent signing to Canadian indie label Arts & Crafts. With that in mind, you can probably get a sense of what Reuben & the Dark sound like. Fronted by Calgary singer-songwriter Reuben Bullock, the band mix atmospheric guitars, pounding drums and layered harmonies to create a sound that's more Local Natives than Fleet Foxes, but with lots of echo. "Can we get more reverb in all the mics?" Bullock asked as the night began. "We like it pretty wet." Right. Strangely, the highlight of the night came when Bullock finally put down his acoustic guitar. Stepping to the front of the mic like a poor man's Ian Curtis, Bullock seemed to gain even more attention from the already enraptured crowd. (It probably helped that the final two tracks of the evening were the most guitar-driven as well.) Reuben & the Dark are definitely a dynamic act with a bright future ahead of them. Now they just need to figure out that whole stage presence thing (and lay off the weird foreplay jokes).