15 Passenger • 2018

15 Passenger • 2018

Self-described cynic Tim Kasher has always sounded angry; however, on Vitriola, the Cursive frontman is pissed. The band’s first release since Trump’s election, Vitriola is clearly politically-charged. It’s also the first release from Cursive in six years, the first with original drummer Clint Schnase since 2006’s Happy Hollow, and the band’s first release to feature a cellist - Megan Siebe - since 2003’s The Ugly Organ. While returning to similar sounds of earlier albums, the themes of Vitriola shift from inner to outer rage, against a system out of our control. Album opener “Free to Be or Not Be You and Me” has Kasher screaming, “So yes, I’m pissed, I feel cursed with life / I can’t just exist when I need to know I’m right.” Long-time producer and collaborator Mike Mogis helps the band shape a dark, moody album that clips along despite its heavy disposition. “It’s Gonna Hurt” is another standout track, showcasing Matt Maginn’s thumping bass lines and Ted Stevens’ screeching guitar; combined with a weeping cello and Kasher’s gnarly wails, it’s Cursive at their beautifully rotten core.

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