TVD Live: Givers at the Black Cat, 9/18

Finally. An indie band that knows how to play (and by play I mean pound, hit, smack and strum the crap out of) their instruments. Comprised of five twenty-somethings from Lafayette, Louisiana, Givers creates a glorious cacophony of music with a delightful amount of instrumental variety that distinguishes them as “Avant Pop.”

At the heart of their sound (and that of their opening acts, Lord Huron and imagineIAM) is a surf rock sound. In fact, Lord Huron’s songs even included a layered sound bite of pouring water, as if their music was being played outside, near a waterfall. However, Givers adds an extra synthy after-taste to this sound, much like that of recent surf rock revivalists Beach House.

Even beyond that, everything from celtic-sounding flutes to xylophones were being utilized by the band members, the most multi-dexterous of which was Tiffany Lamson, who sang, played multiple guitars, banged out extra beats on a small set of drums and manned the mallot on that xylophone I mentioned.

When all of this came together in an intricate yet light and dance-y sound, the audience giddily responded to hearing tracks like “Up Up Up” and “Meantime.” Especially well-played was “Noche Nada,” a song the band explained that they hadn’t played for over a year before last Tuesday night at the Black Cat. But despite a lack of recent practice, the song was played beautifully.

Clearly in their early twenties, it is hard to believe this band seems beyond their years in musical taste as well as general musicality, and it was interesting to hear that they almost didn’t come to be.

“If it wasn’t for Chad Foulk of imagineIam, I would be in college right now and some other band would be playing here tonight,” explained guitarist Taylor Guarisco. “Not that you should drop out of school! But everyone should pursue their dreams.”

In this circumstance, it is indeed a good thing this band dropped out of school; with only one full-length album, In Light, underneath their belt right now, it will be interesting to see what is yet to come from them.

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