Wonka Vision Magazine

Caves – Get On With It

Caves fucking owns, and that’s all there is to it. The Portland foursome’s debut album, “Get On With It,” communicates a sense of urgency in the title, but hit play and what follows is anything but forced. In fact, it’s more like a dance party explosion. But make no mistake – although Caves’ songs are rife with beat clichés and somewhat predictable melodic lines, the dance vibes emulating from every track override the tendency to dismiss it as simply generic. It’s easy to create something that will get people moving. It’s extra challenging to make it simultaneously fresh and catchy. Caves seems to strike a perfect middle-ground without appearing desperate.

The music itself is pretty easy to characterize, with obvious new wave influences infused with all the echo and reverb consistent with a rocksteady dub sound. But this band has something else – a certain “it” factor – that makes its stand out among its peers. No doubt, Caves is one of those bands likely to bring to the listener’s mind comparisons of and to various bands – Bloc Party and Hot Hot Heat immediately come to mind – but the sound is much more complex than it appears at surface level and Caves shouldn’t be written off as another one of those “sounds like” bands.

The album kicks off with the mellow introductory “Curiosity” which eases the listener into the band’s clean, mastered sound. At the close of the track, Caves then dives headfirst into an upbeat electro dance craze with the title track. What follows in the next 35-some-odd minutes is a dash of math rock, distorted fuzz, upbeat offbeats, plays on word and real live energy. Although the band boasts a mash-up of genres alongside a cross-section of eras, jangling staccato guitar hooks permeate every track, making it infectious beyond transmission. Call it what you want, but don’t sell Caves short of its sophisticated construction and presentation to boot. One thing is certain: File Under Sweet Jams.

Rating: 4/5
Release Date: November 18, 2008