Written by Fense
Listening to Get On With It by Caves (MySpace), I cannot help but be reminded of a hyped up young Seattle group called Natalie Portman’s Shaved Head. While there are several differences in the music the two bands create, I get the impression that Caves are to Portland what NPSH is to Seattle—a local hype group a ton of people get excited about.
Both include that sound—you know, the catchy and pointed guitar riffs, the flashy synth and keyboard lines. It’s artsy pop that clashes funk with elements of modern disco. Hell, there’s even a hint of that trait that made Vampire Weekend so big about half a year ago (though, I’ll argue that Caves utilizes the same elements of ska much more effectively in that they are extremely subtle and almost nonexistent; I never could get into VW).
Get On With It remains consistent for a band that, until fairly recently, considered themselves heavily influenced by shoegaze. These roots are virtually gone and rarely surface on this release. One exception is closing track “You (Plus) Me”, in which a space-y guitar drone makes a welcome appearance. Not surprisingly, the song does lack much of the hype aspects of the rest of the album, but it is excellent nonetheless.
As a whole, the album flows nicely. Unlike many artists, they don’t crowd the beginning with their top songs; instead, they’re spread throughout the album. “Closure”, while not nearly as upbeat and dance-ridden as other tracks, is a major highpoint for its laid-back swagger; there are plenty of upbeat tracks viable of the highpoint label as well including opener “Curiosity”, “I Lied”, and “Metaphysical (Let’s Get)”.
Get On With It probably won’t go too far beyond the Pacific Northwest (this in no way means the album is worthy or qualified or good enough to do so—it’s merely a side thought), but I can see Caves blowing up and entering the national independent music scene in the near future.
Caves: Curiosity [mp3]
Self-Released [CD, 2008]
2. Get On With It
4. I Lied
5. Rock You To Sleep (Manic)
6. Optimist, Pessimist
7. Metaphysical (Let’s Get)
9. Without Thinking
11. You (Plus) Me