Now, it had been a whole minute since Cage the Elephant hit the ground running with some new tunes (2015). So, when the talk of this record made its way through the grapevine, fans and music-goers all the same began to build the hype for the album to come. Now, let’s see if it lived up to all the expectations. When diving into this record, it is apparent that Cage the Elephant crafted a work that was going to be cohesive to their vision and their characteristic sound, which works so beautifully for them because of how unique their musical approach is. Cage the Elephant is one of the only artists that can perch themselves on that fine intersection of indie, pop, and alternative music, but as they sit there, they are also throwing dashes of electronics, synth, and even the mod/party style of music, which creates this overly ornate sound. Even though this sounds like a bit overkill, none of their selections are overly complicated; rather, most of them fall on the simpler side, or a mixture that falls in between because sometimes the lyrics get the push and other times it’s the instrumentals. Overall, I am giving this album a 4.5 out of 5 stars. This is one of those records to put your windows down to on a warm summer’s day and just drive, or just sit with a cup of coffee and let this spin in the background. Regardless of how you listen to it, this is one of the albums that is keeping the music scene leaning forward in 2019, and everyone should check it out.
“Black Madonna”, “House of Glass”, and “Social Cues”
When making your way through the album, it is apparent that the characteristic “Cage the Elephant” sound is packed into each individual selection. However, when listeners land on these tracks, they will be pleasantly surprised, for that alternative, indie, pop sound is taken to the next level to stretch the boundaries of those crossing genres, which creates musical sensations that are new to the music scene. Furthermore, the entire record provides solid music for the listeners, but these are works that people shouldn’t sleep on- pure musical innovation at its finest.
When first glancing at the album artwork, I must say one will likely be confused by the image that they see, and that couldn’t be more on brand for Cage the Elephant. The cover art depicts an image of a male in a latex suit, with a cowboy hat on, and it looks like he may be in the bathroom because of the tile that lies in the background. So, taking that all in, it is kind of an odd image to place upon your album cover. So, does it connect to what falls on the inside? In a weird, twisted way, I would say so. The title of the album is “Social Cues”, and throughout each track, the band takes the audience through a variety of emotions, situations, and feelings that one would encounter out in society. These are random, and they aren’t strict in constriction or in progression. Furthermore, this enforces that thought of those cues being out of the ordinary, and even though a latex cowboy doesn’t scream “social cues”, it does smack the audience with something that is very out of the norm. With all of this in mind, I would say that the two work well together: I would’ve liked a more direct connection between the two, but also, I couldn’t begin to describe what should replace it.
*”Social Cues” was released on April 19th 2019 through 1 1 0 Entertainment LLC.