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The Ruby Pines / Press

“Consisting only of Michael Backus, Moorea Masa, and one lonely acoustic guitar, the Ruby Pines are a stripped-down sapling of a band—not to mention they've only been playing together for the better part of 2011. However, there is something hauntingly familiar and innate about the music this mostly local duo is making. Backus strums through blues riffs while Masa's thick and resounding voice stands intrepid at front and center, evoking Etta James, Mahalia Jackson, and other great vocalists who form our concepts of early R&B and gospel singing, and have been overthrowing our emotions for years. And with their scant collection of recordings—the Ruby Pines released a solid, self-titled EP in March—these live performances are to be cherished, with hopes that new material will be cropping up soon. RAQUEL NASSER”