all words: Andy Hess
all photos: Julian Vu
It was hard not to feel a sense of deja vu while leaving the Givers show Friday night at The Black Cat. Even the same group of hecklers were there even though I’m not sure if they like the band or just enjoy taunting them. When I last saw the band in February they played an infectious, joyous set that left me with my jaw on the floor. Friday’s performance wasn’t as Earth shattering as the one in February, but when you’re caught off guard few things will be.
Lafayette, Louisiana’s Givers make pop music with a violent edge. The music ebbs and flows, going from a pleasant groove to an overpowering, explosive chorus in a matter of seconds. It’s hard not to get lost in the music. And go deaf because of it. Givers play with the volume up. But don’t regard that wall of sound coming from the PA as a lack of skill. Drummer Kirby Campbell and bassist Josh LeBlanc man the airtight rhythm section, while guitarist Taylor Guarisco and multi-instrumentalist Tiffany Lamson trade verses and guitar lines.
While the band has been compared most to and toured with Dirty Projectors, the group has cultivated a sound of their own blending world music with the zydeco music found in their home state. With a set over an hour long, the group played the entirety of their self-titled EP along with other tracks that are bound to make there way onto the band’s forthcoming full-length record. They even treated the crowd to a self-proclaimed rarity to end their proper set that definitely sounded like it had been a while since they had played it.
But at the end of the night it’s hard to deny the group for what it is — a heart-warming, unique, and fun group of people that make refreshingly simple music. Riding the wave of momentum from positive reviews of the aforementioned EP and their road-warrior mentality, I wouldn’t be surprised to see the group becoming a staple in popular unpopular music sooner rather than later.