Cold War Kids’ jaunt through New York couldn’t come at a better time. The Internet has been awash with the band’s EP cuts, and we branded ‘em a Band To Watch. And watch we have. After last week’s show at Bowery, we geared up for the first of a three night stand at Pianos. Last night was CWK’s proper introduction to the masses. Bloggers, industry types and indie-rock lover David Cross piled into the room on Ludlow for a glance at the latest web-buzz boys. Verdict? These Reagan babies are definitely worth your time. And just a little patience.
The Bowery show belonged to another band, but this night was for the Kids. CWK served up some blues influenced yelp-rock with a dose of soul-clapping swagger. They twitch and they bound, while their songs pulse and still sound full — despite some sparse passages of stick-tapped Pellegrino bottles, muted guitars and two-note bass lines. But when you open with songs as great as “We Used To Vacation” and “Hang Me Up To Dry,” you run the risk of a mid-set let down. And we got a bit of one. If the band has a weakness, it isn’t in performance; it’s in the sameness of the lesser material.
Cold War Kids bring what the blog machine needs: four awesome MP3s, a fresh synthesis of time-tested influences and an animated stage show. And so we’ll continue to write, and watch them grow. As our favorite “indie rock Kingmaker” Ryan Schreiber (Ryan, you gotta put that on your business card) admitted to Washington Post, even a 9.0 act like Clap Your Hands just isn’t that great live: “I’m really anticipating their next album. At their heart, they write really good songs. But I think they got too much too soon.”
Cold War Kids fans no doubt anticipate the Pitchfork Kingdom’s verdict. Whatever it shall be, we’ll still be listening.
1. We Used To Vacation
2. Hang Me Up To Dry
3. Hair Down
4. Saint John
6. Hospital Beds
8. Expensive Tastes
9. Sermons V The Gospel