Show Review: Caveman @ The Parish (4/1)

I hadn’t really been out and about, at least not to a proper show, since SXSW.  But, with the Brooklyn act, Caveman, coming to town with their friends Pure Bathing Culture, I thought it would be the perfect time to venture out; it didn’t hurt that they bands would be playing at the Parish, which always has great sounds.

Read on for my thoughts on the bands and your typical excellent shots from B. Gray.

It’s always hard to get a good crowd on a Monday, but I think the bands knew that, so when Pure Bathing Culture took to the stage they got right to it.  The duo of Daniel and Sarah really seemed to enjoy the evening, consistently emitting light smiles, with Sarah warming up as each song progressed.  By the time the group had worked their way through half the set, you could tell they were hitting their groove.  Most of the songs came from their 12″ EP, which you can grab from Father Daughter Records, with the excellent hit “Ivory Coast” included in the live set and the EP.  Personally, I got this Wilson Phillips vibe, but only if you spun that around whispy electronics and bedroom pop; I enjoyed that, so don’t take it as an insult.  I particularly like the simplicity of the lyrics, using simple AA rhyme schemes to weave poetic love stories/themes.  Having just seen them, I completely get the name now; their music is like sitting in a warm bath with candlelight dancing against the walls, all the while smooth pop jams emit from your FM radio.

Caveman had more of a psychedelic atmospheric wash on their organic pop sound, at least when I stood right next to the stage.  In that arena, the group really seemed to be more of a rocking outfit than their albums Beware Coco and Caveman might lead you to believe.  I enjoyed those moments, especially when singer Matthew Iwanusa would trade his guitar in for drum sticks to pound his floor tom–loud and rhythmic, the way drums should be. But, I also chose to escape to the back for a bit, trying to catch a little bit more of the sounds I’ve enjoyed on the band’s recorded material.  Back from the stage the vocal harmonies and the inherent pop aethetic the band has developed blossomed into full form.  Of course they squeezed out great hits from their first effort like “Thankful” and “My Time,” with “In the City” from their latest effort a clear standout among the glorious new songs.

My award for the evening has to go to Caveman drummer Stefan.  First, I appreciated his effort/sound with such a slimmed-down kit.  But, that doesn’t even compare to his endearing smile and ability to interact with all members of the band from behind the kit.  I don’t think anyone can say a bad thing about either band on the night; both acts played delightful sets that their Austin audience greatly appreciated.

Photog Note: Stefan also dealt with us media types. Thanks for checking on us making sure everything was cool, as though The Parish was his home and we were invited guests. There are a few more pics at the photo site

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