Cursive's Domestica

Author: Kevin Coffey
1/19/11 | Omaha World Herald | | Live Show Preview
It was like dropping quarters into a jukebox. Some old favorites played over the speakers, and everyone sang the words they knew. But last night, it was a live band playing a 10-year-old album, not songs chosen from a playlist. On Tuesday night, Omaha indie band Cursive played its acclaimed 2000 album, "Domestica," to a sold-out house at the Waiting Room Lounge in Benson. The band played for more than an hour and 35 minutes, "Domestica" being in the middle of that. Tim Kasher, Ted Stevens, Matt Maginn, Cully Symington and Patrick Newbery did a great job of re-creating the record live, including the odd noises on songs such as "Shallow Means, Deep Ends." Cursive studio albums have never really done it for me; at least they're not quite like seeing them live (an experience I've always loved). There's something about the band's energy ? wild at even the quietest times ? that seems far too confined by a recording studio. As for "Domestica," a sort of concept album about a relationship with its share of differences, it's always been my favorite Cursive album, and it was made even more spectacular on Tuesday night. Drummer Symington hit those skins hard, bassist Maginn rounded out the solid rhythm section. Kasher and Stevens' guitars conflicted, but in a Cursive song, that's harmony. On trumpet and keys, Newbery provided all the extra melody, as well as some noise. Kasher has one of those really good voices that's not really that good at all, but his shout-singing has so much emotion that it more than gets by. If you've never heard Cursive, think of a punk outfit with more nuanced lyrics and much better musicianship. "We spent our New Year's in Chicago, where we performed 'Domestica' in its entirety," said a shaggy-haired Kasher. "It seemed rude and unfit not to do it in our hometown." The first five songs off the record went off without Kasher saying anything in between but "Thanks." It went off so well that it made me wonder how many times the band had played songs such as "The Game of Who Needs Who the Worst" or "Making Friends and Acquaintances." But the songs were effortless renditions without any apparent flaws (at least to my ears). My favorite song of the night was "The Radiator Hums." Its melody was played delicately at first, but it gained in force until Kasher was screaming, "Don't call me pretty baby." Awesome. Some audience members seemed like latecomers to the Cursive party. A few girls standing near me may have only been 8 years old when the album came out, but the more the merrier, I suppose. It was one of the wildest crowds I've ever seen at the Waiting Room and much the same as far as an indie rock crowd goes. Fists were pumped, glasses were raised and hipsters jumped around. The band was appreciative. "Thank you so much," Kasher said. "Thanks for coming and hanging out."
Cursive's Domestica

Cursive's Domestica

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