Genre-defiant indie rockers to play show in Cleveland

Brenna McNamara

Courtesy Tub Ring

Credit: Ron Soltys

Chicago-based Tub Ring is as diverse as its roots in the pounding heart of the Midwest.

Finally, it seems simple that Tub Ring, a band whose both plague and blessing has been its failure to be pigeonholed into a genre, originated in a place with a similar identity-crisis-slash-blessing.

“Chicago has influenced our music because it’s the center of the U.S. It’s where everyone crosses at,” said Tub Ring bass player Trevor Erb. “That translates directly to our music. There is no one defining genre that rules Chicago. There’s something for everyone. I think that’s what our music grabs from.”

Experimental, punk, pop, metal, surf and classical are among the labels slapped on Tub Ring.

The group of high-school punk rockers that popped out in 1992 has shot past puberty and become harnessed into “the current incarnation” of Tub Ring, a more complex, poppy listen. Featured in video games and on MTV, the band may be all grown up, but still not quite ready for business-casual.

“It’s still brash and crazy,” Erb said. “But more well-orchestrated.”

Erb said Tub Ring has something to offer everyone, much like Chicago’s food -his favorite pastime. “If you don’t like one song, wait around for two-and-a-half minutes, and you’ll find one you like,” Erb said.

The band members each bring respective influences. Keyboardist Rob Kleiner is into movie scores. Singer Kevin Gibson likes pop. Drummer Chris Wiken has a recent obsession with country, something bandmates have yet to understand.

Tub Ring’s fans are as eclectic as the band, said Erb, the metal guy of the band. “Our audience has metal fans to the quiet reserved fans who you wouldn’t expect to come to shows,” he said.

“We go from zero to 60,” Erb said of the adrenaline-fueled supernova live shows. “We don’t want to stand around. It’s about going nuts and bouncing off the walls, and making sure our audience does the same.”

The band that steam rolls through 200 tour dates per year will be traveling through May on its Spring Break ’92 Tour, a title Erb said came from having “a few too many” and screaming things like “Spring Break 2003! Whoo!” at the audience. Unfortunately for Erb, he’ll be torn away from Chicago’s food; but lucky for us, Tub Ring stops at Peabody’s Down Under in Cleveland tomorrow.

Contact all reporter Brenna McNamara at [email protected].