Caterpillars - Caterpillars EP
Record Label: Unsigned
Release Date: Fall 2008
Amazement is a rarity around here. I could discuss some hyperbolic story about the last time I felt it - 1994 and glue that smelled like Froot Loops was involved - but I won’t. I’m not sure what it is about my wiring that disallows me this simple joy. Actually, to be honest, I blame porn. For your sake I won’t get into the why’s of it. Covering my bases with such stupid words is just a defense mechanism in case this happy sentiment is rushed and completely forced. Is 6 days really enough time to call Caterpillars amazing? Aren’t these pure emotions supposed to be instantaneous; i.e. “you just know”? I reckon Edison knew he had done something awesome immediately, but for some reason I feel like Einstein possessed a lot of self-doubt. Einstein and me, we’re not so different. Oh right, music.
Caterpillars are fantastic, and that’s the most effective way to put it. (No it’s not. - Editor) For such a young band, their polished melodies and light atmospheres sound miraculous. I almost suspect wrongdoing, but I won’t investigate for fear of bursting my own bubble. The five songs on this self-titled EP run the gamut from gorgeous to pulsing to dramatic to dazzling. Caterpillars use synths extremely effectively, so each electronic note adds to the experience rather than detracts from it. “Bury Your Words”, for example, burgeons to impressive depths with slight beeps and tricky drums. It’s full-bodied and intense while still being easy on the ears for those nights you need to relax. In this case relaxation does not imply boredom.
Vocally, the band sits somewhere in between Colonies and The Postal Service, so expect wonders. The singing could have easily been polished to the point of annoyance, but instead there is just a smidge of grime and humanness left in. This insistence on keeping the focus on living and feeling rather than technology and wiring can be directly attributed to producer Ed Rose, who’s about as famous as a producer can be, which is to say not very! (Just kidding, Mr. Rose.)
“I’ve Been Lost” might have landed on my top songs of 2008 list had I not heard it last week. An electronic drumbeat punctuates vocals dripping in echoes and effects. Lyrics like “I have seen this part of the world far too many times / And I’ve been lost for far too long” reek of a desire for bigger and better. This is a band feening for respect, grasping for fame and hoping to make a dream come true. The best part is that Caterpillars can actually reach its goals.
No wait, maybe “A Place To Call My Own” would make the list. Its eruption into rugged guitar riffing and bigger-than-Yao drums is one of those moments you hope never ends. And it’s all in direct opposition to the rather breezy vocals. Everything you could want out of a song is here, and by that I mean the strategy and subsequent construction behind these songs is so thoughtfully crafted that you’ll wonder why anyone would write songs that don’t sound like this. Amazing.
Recommended If You Like: Colonies, Brightwood, towns with people names, The Postal Service, people with...town names?
Hah yeah. I was hoping someone would review this EP on AP.
I usually click on anything you post. Because it's always a great read.
Not to be the kiss-ass, but I agree as well. Very solid review, thanks for posting about these guys. They have a great atmospheric sound, I have to add them to my already-massive list of CD's I have to buy with Christmas cash.