Review: Tim Kasher – Bigamy: More Songs from The Monogamy Sessions (2011)

Tim Kasher. 2009 brought us Mama, I’m Swollen and 2007 Help Wanted Nights from the Omaha songwriter’s Cursive and The Good Life. He’s been the personal favorite out of the Saddle Creek community due to a consistent output and his anguished brilliance when it comes to lyrics. On tour, the passion translates. Kasher more successfully bottles up what he writes and unleashes it, with the control of a seasoned actor, on stage better than his brethren. More recently 2010 brought us his solo debut, The Game of Monogamy, which truthfully was an extension of The Good Life-practically indistinguishable. And this time around, an EP entitled Bigamy: More Songs from the Monogamy Sessions will accompany the Nebraskan on his latest tour.

“My life is full of melody, but rarely ever harmony.” The way Kasher begins once more, and continues through the EP evidences that this discordant struggle between idealism and reality may be his personalized form of harmony. The singing, disembodied towards the end over a swirl of keys akin to The Ugly Organ is a continuation, befitting being snuck into the full-length. However the way it opens, catches the wind and is carried forth may have been more befitting had “Monogamy Overture” and “A Grown Man” were more The Good Life than solo. Similarly “Opening Night” is another potential album opener, laying the tracks for a solitary journey either towards a 30s self-examination of one’s place where “all my friends have grown and gone” or towards progression.

Admittedly a personal issue that’s grown is that, while over the years Kasher’s songwriting has been the soundtrack to many a night akin to a sort of mentor to wading through more choppy waters, this apprentice has evolved while waiting on the mentor to follow suit. Be it a desire for Carlo Collodi inspired fairytales contain in staffs and time signatures, or the dizzying jazz exclamations of “Retreat!” over a state of contemporary affairs. While yes I am talking Cursive, a more personal dimension was exposed early on. I got ripples of a hopeful progression as in “A Bluer Sea” when he sings, coupled by lovely vocals, “Without an anchor, I’m a wreck.” It’s the most beautiful track on the EP, well worth it. “The Jessica” with its refreshing acoustic strum strips Tim Kasher down. Without that extra baggage of an electric amplifying the pangs of reflection, it’s where the songwriter should further explore moving forward and avoid looking “old and bored and stormy.”

Everything needs a balance to keep composed. While the EP is overwhelmed by the dreary, introspective Kasher, we do get glimpses of what could potentially break the storm.

Tour Dates

8/18 – Chicago, IL – Schubas
8/19 – Pontiac, MI –  The Crofoot
8/20 – Columbus OH – Double Happiness
8/21 – Cleveland, OH – Grog Shop
8/22 – Rochester, NY – Bug Jar
8/23 – Boston, MA – Great Scott
8/24 – New York, NY – Mercury Lounge
8/25 – Philadelphia, PA – Johnny Brenda’s
8/26 – Washington, DC – Red Palace
8/27 – Chapel Hill, NC – Local 506
8/28 – Greenville, NC – The Tipsy Teapot
8/29 – Atlanta, GA – The Earl
8/30 – St. Augustine, FL – Café Eleven
8/31 – Orlando, FL – The Social
9/1 – Tallahassee, FL – Club Downunder
9/2 – Birmingham, AL – Bottletree
9/3 – Memphis, TN – Hi Tone
9/4 – Little Rock, AR – Sticky Rock & Roll Chicken Shack
9/6 – Austin, TX – Mohawk
9/7 – Dallas, TX – The Loft
9/8 – Oklahoma City, OK – The Conservatory
9/9 – Lawrence, KS – Jackpot
9/10 – Omaha, NE – The Waiting Room

Rating: 6.0/10

Founder, Editor, Writer, Photographer. (Austin, Texas)

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