Cursive makes a resounding return on the dark, stark, nihilistic Vitriola | Concert Preview | Chicago Reader

Cursive makes a resounding return on the dark, stark, nihilistic Vitriola 

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click to enlarge Cursive

Cursive

Tony Bonacci

Twenty-one years after releasing their debut album, Such Blinding Stars for Starving Eyes, emotional posthardcore sextet Cursive resurfaced in 2018 with their first LP in six years. Vitriola (15 Passenger), which came out in October, isn’t just a collection of their catchiest and most cutting songs in a decade; it’s a callback to the sound of the band’s 2003 breakout, The Ugly Organ, on which they paired discordant but infectious melodies with strings, keyboard, brass, and more. Vitriola is the first Cursive album since The Ugly Organ to feature a full-time cellist, and new member Megan Seibe plays an integral role in establishing a dark vibe that deftly accompanies the nihilistic lyrics of singer-guitarist Tim Kasher and the group’s gnarly distortion and grooves. Album standout “Ouroboros,” named after the ancient symbol of a snake eating its own tail, most directly speaks to Kasher’s fascination with humanity consuming itself: “We were blessed with an enlightened intellect / Enlightened intellect made the Internet / The Internet gave the world a mouthpiece / That swallowed our enlightened intellect.” Tonight Cursive are joined by a pair of excellent emo contemporaries (albeit with a softer edge), MewithoutYou and the Appleseed Cast.   v

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