Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Cage The Elephant Can Shake Me Down

Cage The ElephantComing off of their sweaty and unrestrained eponymous debut in 2009 (2008 in the U.K.), Cage The Elephant is already making promises not to disappoint in 2011. Their new single, Shake Me Down, off the upcoming album Thank You, Happy Birthday, is a defining release for these garage rockers hailing from Bowling Green, Kentucky.

The band is ready too. Matthew Shultz has said several times that Cage The Elephant is anxious to play new material. So anxious, in fact, the band recently announced it would play the entire album at Grimey's Basement in Nashville on Dec. 2, several weeks before its release in January.

Fans can expect some changes to the sound. During one interview last year, Shultz alluded to how he was once inspired by John Lennon, who had said The Beatles always strived to produce songs that sounded like another band wrote them.

"So whenever we were writing a song that sounded similar to something we've written before, we'd scrap it and start it over," Shultz said.

The yet to be released song, 2024, underscores Shultz's point. You can hear it via the original preview release at Filter Magazine (now it's everywhere). The contrast between Shake Me Down and 2024 is obvious, with its grittier, sharper sound with the treble straining under the staccato.

The lyrics too seem far off from Shake Me Down, which plays as a brooding outcast confessional that conveys everyone else might have their eyes cast down on the ground, but you can still fix yours on the sun. The message is clear enough. It doesn't matter where you've come from as much as where you're headed. Take a listen on this unofficial band-released vid.

As a defining song for the band, Shake Me Down sets a high bar for the rest of the 13-track album while 2024 takes it down a notch. The rest of the track titles suggest a blend of contemplative, ragged, and catchy indie alt pop throughout.

Cage The Elephant was originally formed after high school friends Matt Shultz (vocals), Brad Shultz (guitar), and Jared Champion (drums) broke up their original band, Perfect Confusion. When they formed the new band, they added Lincoln Parish (lead guitar) and Daniel Tichenor (bass, backing vocals) and were signed by Relentless in the U.K. shortly after.

Shake Me Down Rattles Up To An 8.6 On The Liquid Hip Richter Scale.

You have to give credit for Cage The Elephant always striving to be different and hoping to give Bowling Green something more to brag about than Fruit of Loom manufacturing.

You can pick up Shake Me Down on iTunes. Cage The Elephant also released the single with Thank You Happy Birthday on Amazon. Fans have given it a solid five stars on both platforms. You can also download 2024 for free (email required) via SoundCloud.
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