In my younger metal days, I remember hearing about a hardcore band called American Nightmare who had a singer with one hand. Under normal circumstances, it would suck to be that guy, but if you’re the vocalist in a hardcore band, it could be used as a pretty unique gimmick to separate yourself from the pack in a crowded marketplace. Personally I would’ve gone with a hook attachment for maximum effect during live performances, but that’s just me, and I’m weird. Anyways, American Nightmare never really took off and they broke up sometime in the mid-00s. The singer, Wesley Eisold took that time to re-invent himself as a sort of goth indie hipster type and created the experimental synth pop band Cold Cave. They just released their second album Cherish the Light Years, and I this was the first date of what I believe was their maiden headlining tour.
The set was short and sweet, only 10 songs in 45 minutes. I’ve never seen a headliner do this, but considering that the show was only about $12 to get in, I wasn’t complaining too much. There were a lot of noticeable omissions from the set, especially “The Great Pan is Dead” which was the lead single from the new album. Considering that this is a new band, I expect there will be plenty of other opportunities to hear the songs they skipped.
To be honest, the show wasn’t very “live” at all other than the drums. It appeared that Wesley Eisold and his co-keyboard/sequencer operator were hitting “play” on a sequencer and tweaking the samples with filters. To drive this point home, the keyboard player at one point ran away from his setup in mid song to dance, and the song was not affected in any way. Conspicuously missing from this tour was the female member of the group. I’ve read a lot of interweb chatter that she is indie rock royalty and is in some super cool band I’ve never heard of, so I can only assume she was busy with that. The female vocals were sampled instead, which was kind of weak, but the show was still fantastic and Cold Cave sounded better than a lot of “live” bands I’ve seen.
As a recording note, I want to mention that this show was noisy. A lot of feedback and sounds that make you want to cover your ears. Not helping the situation was the fact that the singer would shake the mic over the monitors in front of the stage mid-song, creating a very shrill feedback loop that would make me regret forgetting my earplugs.
Included here is “Love Comes Close”, “The Laurels of Erotomania” and “Catacombs”.
Setlist: 07/12/11 Knitting Factory Brooklyn
1. Icons of Summer
2. Youth and Lust
4. Love Comes Close
5. Theme from Tomorrow’s World
6. Villians of the Moon
7. I’ve Seen the Future and It’s No Place for Me
8. Burning Sage
9. The Laurels of Erotomania
Download: Cold Cave – Love Comes Love (Live)