Cave In Perfect Pitch Black

Having your dreams dashed away in an instant is devastating, but Boston’s Cave In saw it coming. Before RCA could formally swing the axe, the band severed ties with the company after 2001’s Antenna didn’t set the scene ablaze. Luckily they found Hydra Head (Cave In’s original home) waiting eagerly to have the group return to its fold. Perfect Pitch Black is a true pastiche of the trials and tribulations of the past three years. Taken in chronological order, the songs speak to all Cave In fanatics: the first post-Antenna composition, the Oasis-like "Down the Drain” highlights gurgling chords like the Who’s "You Better You Bet.” "The World Is in Your Way” and "Trepanning” prominently feature Caleb Scofield’s caustic vocals, which should have fans of the band’s early days pumping both fists. "Paranormal” sports plenty of guitarist Stephen Brodsky’s ultra-soaring vocals, and the ballad-esque "Tension in the Ranks” could be a kingly carry-over from Tides of Tomorrow. With the logical lack of cohesion notwithstanding, Perfect Pitch Black captures a band in the transition of rediscovering themselves, encapsulated by each member’s personal essay in the liner notes. Though hopes of rock stardom are curbed, Cave In have returned to making music dictated by them, not by a multi-page contract.

Did RCA just not understand Cave In? Brodsky: The sensitivity to our history was virtually lost by the time we began writing songs for RCA album #2. This is because in the two years that we were signed a big merger had taken place, our A&R person had left, and a slew of other people on our side were either laid off or moved on to other things. By the time we started work on a new record, their understanding of who we are as a band was very murky.

Newer fans had hoped for an even poppier evolution on the next album. It’s impossible for us to make two records that sound alike. I’d like to think that attempting new avenues in our sound and our abilities is a big part of the appeal for a significant portion of our fans.

Conversely, older fans hoped that you’d crank out a heavier, return-to-the-roots record of your debut. Yeah, we really found a new life in some of the older tunes we decided to relearn. It adds a good dynamic to the band — one that we sort of overlooked for a few years. Not to mention that Caleb certainly has a phenomenal screaming voice. I also get a chance to stand in front of my amp and riff a bit more than before, which is always nice. (Hydra Head)