Cymbals Eat Guitars at The Casbah
Sundrop Electric and Hooray For Earth also on the bill
Despite the damp evening weather, a sizeable crowd filled the Casbah on Wednesday October 5, to see the much-hyped New York band Cymbals Eat Guitars, currently touring in support of their new album, Lenses Alien, on Barsuk Records. Local band Sundrop Electric opened the show at 9:30 p.m. and despite their best efforts, most people seemed to be politely waiting for the touring bands to play. Sundrop Electric is comprised of obviously talented musicians, but together they create a sound that follows the beaten indie rock path and failed to engage the crowd. A lone couple danced to some of their songs, but no one else budged.
Boston-bred and New York-based band Hooray For Earth went on second, and accidentally upstaged the headliners. The crowd energetically responded to the band’s mix of analog and synth sounds – a sound that is very current, and a sound they pull off with a lot of skill. Singer/guitarist Noel Heroux sent his guitar signal through numerous effects pedals, and was at times able to make it sound like a synth. Drummer Joseph Ciampini played an analog drum set, but accentuated the songs with an electronic drum machine that added heavy and deep beats, creating a full sound that got a lot of people moving. Even bassist Christopher Principe did double duty, going back and forth between his bass and a keyboard. Hooray For Earth just released their first full-length album, True Loves, on Dovecote Records.
By the time Cymbals Eat Guitars took the stage, the crowd had thinned noticeably. This was probably less their fault and more the fault of the rain, mid-week scheduling, and the notoriously late set times at the Casbah. It was 11:30 p.m. when they started, but Cymbals Eat Guitars seemed unfazed and ripped through a set of songs from both of their albums, with vocalist/guitarist Joseph D’Agostino yelling with a gusto that reminded me more of my favorite post-punk vocalists than your average indie singer. Keyboardist Brian Hamilton filled in the guitar-driven songs with effects-laden synth layers, which expands their sound considerably.