Musicfest NW, Day 1: The Cave Singers

photos by Kyle Johnson

Pete Quirk fronts a band that does a lot with a little musically, keeping it spare and flowing. I’ve seen them hush a fried, frenetic audience late afternoon at the Capitol Hill Block Party, and I think the quietness that ensued was the greatest ever seeing a band being watched on the Main Stage (at that time and just getting drunk). A lot of credit should be given to Quirk, whose burlap-and-brown sugar vocals cast a warm shadow against the sometimes frosty, more alienated sounds in competitors (ha! They’re all pals) of this whole “there’s a bear cub rocking the campfire sing-a-long” genre. Now on excellently progressive label Jagjagwuar, a new LP should be coming up soon, and probably won’t be any less simple or more huggable than their debut on Matador, Invitation Songs. Yes, it’s true to say that if Joe Boyd was devoting himself to recording the best of what’s coming out of the Pac NW now, the Cave Singers would be one of the top three bands to have him on board(s). Live at on air during our broadcast from Doug Fir in Portland during MFNW, The Cave Singers brought a handful of new songs, promising an amazing new album:

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