Monday, May 23, 2011


In the long litany of 80s grave robbers this past decade has produced, you've got your A-team - LCD Soundsystem, Robyn, The National, Arcade Fire, and maybe Cut//Copy, Franz Ferdinand, Interpol, Wolf Parade, Wild Beasts and The Xx.

Then you've got your B-Team, artists that haven't quite yet worked their stylistic thievery into at least one bona fide classic, but still hold promise and have managed to produced interesting and worthwhile spins on the 80's established styles...I'm talking about artists like Hot Chip, A Place To Bury Strangers, Goldfrapp, Future Islands, Twin Shadow, The Phantom Band, M83, Santagold, and Foals.

Then there's the dreaded C-team - bands that have maybe hit pay dirt on a track or two, but overall, give no indication they'll ever amount to more than marginal players reworking tired ideas in tired ways....bands like The Teenagers, VHS or Beta, White Lies, and She Wants Revenge.

It's time to add Cold Cave to that C-Team list.

Delivering a percussion-heavy, bombastic mish-mash of goth-flavored 80s tunes, ranging from Cut//Copy lightness (Confetti and Icons of Summer), to dark Cure/Joy Division-styled murk (Burning Rage), Cherish The Light Years does reveal a guilty-pleasure, arena-rock listenability over time despite band leader Wes Eisold's mush-mouthed phrasing, but only on one moment...the killer horns-and-bass intro to the Nick Zinner collaboration Alchemy And You...does one suspect the band has actually latched on to anything genuinely special.

Things do improve significantly on the album's back half, particularly the three song stretch of Icons of Summer, Alchemy And You, and Burning Sage, but overall I can only justify giving Cherish The Light Years the most tentative of mild recommends, and that's for genre addicts only.

It's listenable and energetic, but it ain't that good.

Status: Mild Recommend.

Cherry Picker's Best Bets: Confetti, Icons Of Summer, Alchemy And You, Burning Sage.

Here's the official video for the Arcade Fire-ish Villians Of The Moon.

Component Breakdown:
1. The Great Pan Is Dead - 6
2. Pacing Around The Church - 6
3. Confetti - 7
4. Catacombs - 6
5. Underworld USA - 6
6. Icons Of Summer - 8
7. Alchemy And You - 8
8. Burning Sage - 7
9. Villains Of The Moon - 7
Intangibles - Average

What are your thoughts on Cold Cave's Cherish The Light Years?  Let readers know with a comment.

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