Opening with slide guitar reminiscent of “My Sweet Lord” from All Things Must Pass, the first solo album by George Harrison, Cave Syndrome, instantly takes off where previous EP, Plantation To Your Youth, left off. The low key Seattle based continues to unveil high quality recordings that are unique in this saturated market of Northwest pop. There are equal parts Big Star and The Church incorporated into the new album with its woozy, late night atmosphere.
Flourishes of vibrant psychedelic guitar canvass the straightforward songwriting of John Frum. This one is also close to home as there are numerous mentions of Northwest places in both the song titles and the lyrics. Cave Syndrome works well as a whole, but highlights include the all too short garage rock driven “Greenwood Backyards” and the stunningly gorgeous epic, “The Cancer In Our Bloodlines.” Perhaps the albums apex, the track incorporates some beautiful violin playing by Amanda Lamprecht. The droning, dark shadows of “Golden Gardens” recall the location in the dead of winter when the bulk of the summer crowd has stayed away for some time. It’s slow acoustic guitar rhythm provides the lonely sense of wonder and doubt that would occur if sitting on the deserted beach at sunset.
One wishes there was more music like this in the current Seattle scene, but this also contributes to the unique, memorable and untrendy characteristics contained within Cave Syndrome. That said, whether there were more bands like this around or not, Transient Songs produce some fantastic music that is worth your attention. This is the stuff of vintage guitars, a bottle of wine, some candles and then maybe a midnight drive through the wilderness. If this makes any sense to you, please purchase this record.