May 6th, 2014


This week’s Crush takes a detour of the path of what most of you may assume this column is about. What? 4 guys, 1 sweet UK based band? What is there not to have a crush on here? Crush’s come in many forms and if you were the kind of person that thought this column was only about girls, then shame on you! The ‘Crush’ is in artists with the whole package (which dates all the way back to the mission statement of the first Crush of theWeek post), of which CYMBALS indeed meet that criteria…

CYMBALS has quickly become one of my new favorite bands. The story of how I became acquainted with them is one of my favorites.  They were one of many artists that cold called me trying to find a slot on the IHC events we were producing at SXSW. Since we do a lot of events, this happens pretty often and the honest truth is that I’m not able to check out every single artist and rarely is there space to consider them for a show, but sometimes there are circumstances that change this. Maybe it’s the tone of the email, maybe it’s just a gut feeling, but every now and then I’m inspired to fully dig in and CYMBALS was one of these rare cases.

I followed the links I was sent and was pleasantly surprised as I checked out the tracks, unaware of the infatuation that would develop. I wrote back informing the author of the email that I really liked his band, but didn’t have any space to add them (which was true at the time). Like most things SXSW, nothing is ever permanent and within weeks a space opened up. I’d kept CYMBALS on my shortlist and invited them to play, which they accepted. It ended up being one of the better booking decisions I’ve made this year because they were by far one of the best acts I had the pleasure of seeing at the entire conference.

Live, CYMBALS reminded me a lot of an early Talking Heads or Hot Chip. There is a serious tone and art behind their songs, yet they are upbeat, dancey, beautiful and fun. You can tell immediately that they put a lot of thought behind both the songwriting and aesthetic they are trying to pursue. As they played I found myself really falling in love with every song. At this point I didn’t have the record yet and hadn’t had a chance to fully hear it. These songs were falling upon virgin ears and when a band can capture your imagination off a totally raw experience you know you’ve stumbled upon something special.

I finally did get their latest full length “The Age Of Fracture” after returning home and it did not disappoint! In fact, it’s quickly become part of my heavy listening rotation. I’m finally able to spend the much needed time with all the tracks I’ve been longing for. CYMBALS, who began as a fleeting flirtation, have become that dependable snuggle buddy of comfort. The natural evolution of our friendship and discovery making the last few months that much more sweet…

Thanks for being my crush this week, guys!

CYMBALS – “The Natural World” Music Video:

CYMBALS – “Erosion” Music Video: