Bumbershoot Music Lounge: The Cave Singers

photos by Dave Lichterman
intro by Christy Thacker

It may come as a surprise that indie folk group, The Cave Singers, came out of the grungified, electro pop Seattle. If I didn’t know better, I’d think someone backpacking across the country found the trio in a mid-west ghost town sippin’ moonshine on the back porch of an abandoned tavern. Their haunting, droney vocals and almost psychedelic anti-climactic songs set the band apart from the typical and copious twangy groups already in existence.

The band was resurrected from the embers of Derek Fudesco’s punk, emoesque Pretty Girls Make Graves. With the dark and dirty Murder City Devils in his bones (played bass and guitar), Fudesco joined forces with vocalist Pete Quirk (of Hint Hint) and drummer Marty Lund (of Cobra High) to the create the rootsy, more down to earth group.

Despite their middle-of-the-road hard rock pasts, The Cave Singers are in their own right a bona fide band making their mark almost overnight with the critically acclaimed album, Invitation Songs (2007). Even more, their refined second album, Welcome Joy (2009), proved their musical aptitude with Quirk’s matured vocals and the band’s optimistic tonal shift.

The Cave Singers started off their secret Music Lounge set with the mellow “Summer Light,” taking us to the dark backwoods of the Appalachians. Closed-eye Quirk, possessed by his lyrics, sang sideways into his mic with the passion of a man hardened by the harsh elements and adversities of mountain life. The band surprised me halfway through the show by picking up the beat with the hard and groovy “At the Cut.” As Lund bashed his drums, Fudesco owned the guitar, showcasing his technical skills and experience as a rock and roll luminary. But, what stunned me the most was their pre-mature ending to “Seeds of the Night.” Three-quarters of the way through the song, Quirk and Fudesco bursted into laughter as they watched Lund playing behind a Plexiglass drum shield. After apologizing, Quirk explained, “we’ve put Marty in a cage before, a real cage, but not a panic room.”

Catch The Cave Singers tonight at 6:45-7:45 p.m. on the Starbuck’s Stage.


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