We Are Caribou is a new band that is starting to make waves in the North American underground. They have been playing shows around the Canada and the United States since early 2009. However, they only just released their first full-length album called “The Desolate Land”. The album has received positive reviews from many music review sites and the band promises a ton of touring this year, with the release of their second full-length in as little as a month.
There are several differences between We Are Caribou and other bands that play the alternative/postmodern genre such as churches, Neurosis, or Lambdadot. For one, their lead guitarist, Matt Pike, plays the bass. Matt’s brother, Greg, also plays the guitar and sings/programs the drums We Are Caribou. With so much talent, this all seems like a match made in heaven… or is it? Let’s find out.
Despite having a solid musical core, We Are Caribou has also employed several songwriters that really make the songs unique. Each of these songwriters brings something to the table that cannot be found in other bands. This is most evident in the guitar playing and bass playing on some songs. Lead singer, Kyleuck, takes guitar duties and does an exceptional job of pulling off the unique riffs that top his brother’s and bassist’s guitar work.
Other songs have a similar guitar/bass mix but focus more on vocals and guitar instead. On the song “Reinventing Your Exit”, Kyleuck sings about leaving a drug rehab facility after being “railroaded” by his drug dealer friend. The song then transitions into a fast paced guitar solo section that includes the use of a double kick, tom-tom, and a few barre chords. It also includes the use of a few repeating chord sequences, which is characteristic of the band’s sound.
Throughout most of the band’s history, John Martyn has held the title of lead guitar player. The current guitarist, Matt Heldering, took over after Martyn’s departure. Matt played on most of We Are Caribou’s early albums, most notably “The Perfect Drug”. During that time, he also did some playing with other well known bands such as Pantera, Skye Tower, and Crowing Fathers. He has since developed his own solo career.
Many songwriters have produced music for We Are Caribou. Some of these songwriters have a great deal of experience producing high quality music for bands like We Are Caribou. Others have only had limited success when working with bands such as We Are Caribou. One of the newer songwriters, Matt Heldering, has also been successful working with bands such as Pantera and Skye Tower.