Cursive and Beach Slang are in the midst of a nationwide tour. Cursive is supporting the re-issue of their classic 2003 album The Ugly Organ. Beach Slang are readying their debut full-length to be released by Polyvinyl later this year. The D.C., Manhattan and Brooklyn shows are sold-out. If you’d prefer to pay face value rather than Stubhub, tickets to their March 7 Philadelphia show are still available.
At the midway point of the tour, we asked James Alex from Beach Slang to interview Tim Kasher from Cursive.
James Alex from Beach Slang: On our drive from Salt Lake City to Boise, we listened to The Smiths catalog in chronological order. A slippery slope, I know. But, yeah, what Smiths song title best describes the way you feel right now?
Tim Kasher from Cursive: “Please, Please, Please Let Me Get What I Want” is the first to pop in my head, and is basically how I always feel, always, as a human being. “Bigmouth Strikes Again” seems appropriate, while on tour.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k5CltsEN8DQ
James Alex from Beach Slang: Without giving away anything that shouldn’t be given away, what’s the coolest/weirdest/experimentalist recording technique you’ve used to get a certain sound?
Tim Kasher from Cursive: I just had a lot of fun revamping some vocal parts through a tweaked chorus pedal and a wah wah pedal, then out of my old Princeton amp with reverb at ten. Then I just played the wah wah along to the music – Fun stuff!
James Alex from Beach Slang: When making mixtapes for people you dig, what five songs have to be there?
Tim Kasher from Cursive: Hmmm… “This Woman’s Work” by Kate Bush, “America” by Simon and Garfunkel, “There Are Worse Things I Could Do” from the Grease soundtrack, “Fractured Atlas” by Elvis Costello, “31 Today” by Aimee Mann…
James Alex from Beach Slang: What’s the non-human thing you miss most on tour?
Tim Kasher from Cursive: My dog Pearl is a non-human. I also miss having hours alone to play guitar in front of bad horror movies.
James Alex from Beach Slang: The Ugly Organ live…is there a moment that wildly lights you up every night? You know, a real heart puncher? If so, can you give the what it is and why you think it is?
Tim Kasher from Cursive: My favorite part of the set has been “Harold Weathervein” into “Bloody Murderer,” as those are two songs we haven’t been playing in the last 12 years since The Ugly Organ came out. I love seeing those songs get so much love from the audience after all these years.
James Alex from Beach Slang: If I took the “Five Places in Omaha That Most Shaped Tim Kasher” tour, where would I be seeing?
Tim Kasher from Cursive: Well, you’d have to go to my childhood home, to be sure. I lived there for my first 18 years, and continue to live there in most all of my dreams.
I’d also take you to Camelot public pool where I spent nearly every day of summer as a child, getting real nervous and excited about the opposite sex.
I’d take you to the site where the “McVoy House” used to be, which sadly is some sort of apartment complex now. It was our main party house in our early twenties, played a lot of shows there and had a lot of weirdo nights.
Heading South, we’d swing by the Cog Factory and Sokol Hall, where we played about a million shows over the years. Cog Factory has been closed down for sometime now; that’s the most important stage we grew up on. Saw lots of amazing shows there too.
Speeding up to the present, I guess I’d have to name drop O’Leaver’s, my favorite bar that also happens to be co-owned by Cursive. We are dying to have Beach Slang play there!!
James Alex from Beach Slang: What book(s)/author(s) has had the most influence on your lyric writing?
Tim Kasher from Cursive: John Updike’s Rabbit Run series is a story I’ll never shake. Seems like everything I write has reflections of Rabbit Angstrom. I love Philip Roth’s unusually honest take on humanity, as well as his self deprecation.
James Alex from Beach Slang: What’s the thing you’d most liked to be asked in an interview but have never been? Also, my apologies for blowing it.
Tim Kasher from Cursive: No, this is it!! This is the question!! But sadly, I have no answer… now I’M the one apologizing for blowing it.
James Alex from Beach Slang: Thanks for taking us on tour and being wildly sweet about every part of it. (Right, this isn’t a question, but, you know, needed to be said.)
Tim Kasher from Cursive: Thanks for blowing our minds night after night and please remember us when you’re doing two nights at Wimbledon!!