Wednesday, June 1, 2011

The Cave Singers - No Witch

The Cave Singers - No Witch

If the sound of dust lifting off from patting bongo drums appeals to you, this album will as well. If raspy echo laced chants to a hidden ghost send you into a dream of fantasy past, this album is in that spirit. If you like your music to peak and valley in time to strums and hooks that seem to belly up from a time long gone - jackpot. If you have any curiosity about what a melodica is, then welcome to "No Witch", a back woods style tribute to knee slappin' boot stompers, folk, roots rock, bluegrass, and probably some sort of hipster trend that I am yet to get in on. The whole affair has a touch of the black magic in it. Approach with caution.

I learned of the Cave Singers through a long term relationship with another awesome band that decided to call it quits after their third album. I was lucky to have seen Pretty Girls Make Graves out of Seattle, who played the second Siren Festival in Coney Island Brooklyn, NY in 2002 (along with Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Les Savy Fav, The Shins, The Donnas, Mooney Suzuki, Sleater Kinney, etc.). Does that sound trite? Well, anyways I bought their record and have seen them three times since. I felt like they kept getting better and better (live... the records are good, but live is like... sweet baby Jehosaphat!), but they decided to do a farewell tour in an amicable nature. They killed in the farewell show I caught at the Black Cat, and out of PGMG came the Cave Singers from guitar whiz Derek Fudesco.

So... this guy is some sort of musical freak because he just absolutely owns every instrument he touches. He's got a soulful vibe; sort of a mystic shamble thing. It's something to see. On record it comes across, especially on "Haller Lake" and "No Prosecution if we Bail". These and others are full of the sort of huff and puff rock that makes this album have a dance around the fire medicine man/peyote kind of vibe. Some of the tones are steeped in this dark mantra of yesterwhen. It's hard to really figure out what singer Peter Quirk is going on about (but in concert it looked pretty important). The lyric sheet didn't help much. Seems that somebody had a bad day mostly while on acid... but it's hard to figure out. Their first two albums are a little more straight forward in this area. On "No Witch" the Cave Singers got stung by the poetry scorpion. It made things go all strange. Example: "Faze Wave" - "gold workout before I saw you, you're waiting for a ride, saw you at the supermarket shopping for a mind"  - uhh, whut?

Anyways, it's good, so you should try and listen to it a few times or something. If you can't find this one maybe the first ones are easier to track down, "Invitation Songs" and "Welcome Joy".

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