I’ve been a fan of Cursive for several years now and have seen them in various venues around the city in that time. Their lyrics are some of the most poetic and intense that the indie rock world has come by. Lead singer Tim Kasher brings the passion to match. Every note sounds like a harsh cry of love lost, pain and anguish. It’s the cry of someone from the darkness who can still see that sad and beautiful world illuminated around him. Amidst his shrieks and lost cries, it’s impossible to not become very quickly aware of one thing that remains after the songs are done and the audience is standing there in the aftermath of the maelstrom: He really means it.
In some ways, this is a band that really fits the label of “emo.” It is a very emotional band with such a sense of the tumultuousness within the shrieks of the vocal delivery, the despair of the lyrics, the building intensity of the guitar playing and drums especially, and the utterly heart wrenching quality of Tim’s delivery. Yet, most of the bands labeled emo or emotional tend to occupy an area of space inhabited by whiners. They aren’t interested in telling a story or creating a grand concept, such as is present in The Ugly Organ. They are much more self absorbed and, in turn, self-pitying. Lost in this is the real possibility of poetry and an appeal to those who may not want to sit around and mope about how awful life is all day. Cursive is much different than these other bands, indeed!
What really made the night for me was the setlist. With songs from both their stellar ep Burst and Bloom and their best full length to date The Ugly Organ, Tim really couldn’t have picked a better collection of songs to play. Everything sounded extremely effective and the audience, contained in thankfully a nonviolent way, was also incredibly responsive. Unlike many of the shows I’ve gone to lately, it actually felt complete at the end and you left feeling like a whole person…which may be strange considering such devastating lyrics. Ultimately, it’s the idea that these things can be shared and there is a great hope for humanity when this becomes possible.