Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald


Cursive discusses show in interview

Some bands write songs about their lives; others write songs
that tell stories. Some bands play songs with a string section; others play
songs with a horn section. Some bands sing songs in soft melodic voices; others
sing songs in screaming, emotive voices. Some bands use a few of these elements
— and some bands are Cursive. They use them all, and tonight at 8 p.m. at Club
770, the Omaha, Neb., indie rockers bring their eclectic live show to the city
of Madison.

Since their reunion in 2000 after a breakup in 1998, Cursive
has released three very distinct albums. Each album is characterized by
different instrumental and lyrical trends. For example, following the
straightforward post-hardcore guitar instrumentation of 2000’s Domestica,
2003’s The Ugly Organ switched gears into a sound which adopted a string
section that remains prevalent throughout the album. In 2006, Cursive changed
their sound once more with the release of the horn-happy album Happy Hollow.

With a catalogue as diverse as Cursive’s, covering all the
instrumental bases in a live situation can be difficult. But that isn’t the
case for this band, said Cursive guitarist and vocalist Ted Stevens during an
interview with The Badger Herald.

“We try to do every album as full as possible,”
Stevens said.

Although the band has brought a full horn section and
cellist on tour with them in the past, their current tour uses a more
stripped-down lineup to represent their variety of instrumental arrangements.

“This time around we’re settling on a five-piece
band,” the musician explained. “What we are trying to do is
consolidate the major melodies to present them with a new flair.”


But one can only speculate as to what this concise lineup
could mean for the future of the band. But Stevens assured the Herald that
another breakup was not a direction the band was heading.

“The reason we are trying to stay active right now is
because we have a lot of new material,” added Stevens. “It’s really
important to me that we try that stuff out live.”

The band is currently in the process of writing their next
album, and, with songs that are still in the developing stages, it is unlikely
that any additional instrumentalists would be necessary or applicable. However,
Stevens also noted that when the band plays new songs, they “get a feel
for what songs are going to be popular ones.” This quite clearly plays a
role in selecting the band’s new album tracks, but there is also a chance that
it implies that a stripped-down lineup could be the next step in the evolution
— or devolution — of Cursive’s ever-changing sound.

While the future of Cursive’s sound remains unclear, one
thing is definite: Tonight’s show at Club 770 should not be missed.

“We strive to perform as well as we can under any
circumstance,” Stevens said.

And tonight will be no different.

Cursive’s performance tonight is sponsored by the Wisconsin Union Directorate Music Committee.

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