Reviews

Mama, I'm Swollen

Author: Jaci Webb
06/19/2009 | Billings Gazette | www.billingsgazette.net | Live Show Preview
When Cursive's frontman, Tim Kasher, was 20 and bumming around Omaha, Neb., playing in the band Slowdown Virginia, a 30ish musician issued him a challenge: "I'd like to see you still doing this when you're 30."

Well, Kasher made it past 30. He's still playing indie rock at the ripe age of 35 and in the last year released a new album "Mama, I'm Swollen" and made his network television debut on "The Late Show with David Letterman" in March. In a recent telephone interview with The Billings Gazette from his home in Santa Monica, Calif., Kasher talked about his interest in filmmaking and his discovery that he could play guitar.

"I suppose it's unfair to the virtuoso who started playing at 3, but I didn't start playing guitar until I was 13. My interest was really in directing and filmmaking, but that seemed so impossible coming from Nebraska. But we had a guitar in the house, so I started playing that. Like any good 13-year-old boy, I was being informed by The Cure, The Smiths, all the bands who I still listen to today."

Cursive toured with The Cure in 2004, just after the 2003 Saddle Creek Records release "The Ugly Organ" propelled them to national fame. Rolling Stone magazine gave the band's CD four out of five stars and the Alternative Press gave it a perfect five stars. Unfortunately, cellist Gretta Schnase left the band in 2005, and the band took a short hiatus with Kasher working on the side project, "The Good Life." In 2006, Cursive reformed as a four-piece, releasing "Happy Hollow," named for an area of Omaha called Happy Hollow Boulevard, which runs parallel to Saddle Creek Road.
Kasher comes across as a thoughtful fellow who analyzes life carefully, including his influences.

"I'm careful about what I'm reading because I take such heavy influence from what I read," Kasher said. "I become consumed by the book for that month. Film as well. I try to take everything in and hope my influences aren't too drastically on my sleeve."

Cursive will play their first show ever in Montana on Saturday night at Yellowstone Valley Brewing Co.'s Garage Pub. They are also performing in Missoula at The Palace on Sunday night. Kasher said he prefers small venues to large, admitting that quite possibly that has hindered the band's progress.

"All of our favorite shows tend to be in smaller rooms. Instead of losing people in the back of the room, we've got everybody down front. If you don't feel like you're connecting with the crowd, the show loses something."
Mama, I'm Swollen

Mama, I'm Swollen

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