Gig: The Cast of Cheers
When I first heard The Cast of Cheers album ‘Chariot’ back in February I considered them one of the most exciting bands in Ireland, after last Friday’s performance in the Roisin Dubh they have made their way to the top of that list.
Excited as I was before the Dublin based math rockers took to the stage I couldn’t help but feel an air of predictability about the set. After all ‘Chariot’ is their only release to date and the band has been gigging pretty solidly since then. What I wasn’t expecting was to encounter new material with the set only three songs old. In fact we were treated to three new tracks and the good news is the latest offerings are every bit as good if not better than what ‘Chariot’ boasts.
While these songs retain an energy level equivalent to a kid at Disneyland after downing a litre of Calpol, they see the band branch out more, experimenting with harmonies and placing a greater emphasis on the vocals of lead singer Conor Adams, whose distinctive growl was flawless live. The impact of these new songs was compounded when Adams revealed to me after the gig that the lyrics have yet to be written and what we witnessed was basically improvisation on his part.
If you’re familiar with The Cast of Cheers you’ll know that their songs are effects laden, fist-pumping anthems that do not stop to take a breath. As such the band simply cannot recreate the many layers of noise live and some is pre-recorded. With pedals being stamped on and buttons being pushed its hard to know what exactly is the product of the foursome’s live endeavours and what is merely a backing track.
What is apparent is that this band comes alive on stage, producing a colossal sound matched by their presence. This was reflected in the number of spectators who made their way in from the bar outside having heard the quality on offer free of charge. Not only that but the crowd was a sea of awkward elbows and knees rising and falling as the infectious music compelled its audience to dance.
2010 has been a landmark year for Irish music and The Cast of Cheers have played their part, now they’ve given something to look forward to in 2011.