The tempestuous feeling that fills every crevice of a Cold Cave show is almost debilitating. Wesley Eisold, the man behind the moniker, is both idiosyncratic and comprehensive in his approach to songwriting with a dark and sinister persona that feeds an intense brand of creativity.
Last year’s You & Me & Infinity was classic Cold Cave, although disappointingly brief at just four songs long. Syncopated drum loops and vibrant melodies underscore ghastly vocals on the EP’S title track while “My Heart Is Immortal” comes off as an audible space oddity dance anthem.
But for all of his eccentricity, Cold Cave’s show this past Saturday (March 2) at The Sinclair in Cambridge was a celebration of the morose and the mesmerizing and he had no problem balancing the two. Opening acts VOWWS and ADULT. left onlookers simultaneously wrecked and rejuvenated; they emanated an energy that was captivating, haunting, and organic.
Their respective sets were steeped in sleek rhythms and unencumbered by musical restraints. Both bands executed memorable performances with spectral presences that served as the perfect introduction to Cold Cave. The privilege of experiencing Cold Cave live is just as stirring and complex as his discography.
Despite clinging to the concept of jadedness (“People Are Poison”) and his inevitable demise (“A Little Death To Laugh”), Saturday night Eisold managed to float seductively on dense reverb. His voice wailed and swayed and lamented just like it was supposed to. Cold Cave’s internalized anguish makes his own form of creative expression seem like an insular prison that he is desperately trying to escape from.
Even flickers of light from “Confetti” couldn’t illuminate Cold Cave’s literal and figurative darkness see that photo up top). “Villains of The Moon” glimmered in its post punk glory; “Theme from Tomorrowland” basked in its flawless synth bombast. But even as Eisold rounded out the evening with “Youth & Lust” and “Promised Land,” Cold Cave bravely reiterated the belief that some of the best moments are erected in the absence of light.
Photo by Candace McDuffie; follow her on Instagram @cmcduffie1.