Music helps when tragedy strikes
Throughout the decades of music, many bands have experienced the death of a band member and last year the metal band Cave In lost their bassist Caleb Scofield to a car accident on March 28, 2018. The death of Scofield shocked the rest of the band and their fan base, but, Stephen Brodsky, J.R. Conners and Adam McGrath did not quit making music.
Earlier this month Cave In released their new album titled Final Transmission. What makes this record unique is how the band was already in the studio recording it prior to Scofield’s death and after the tragedy, the band decided to keep recording the album. The instruments on this record contain electrifying sound which is filled with great rock and metal harmony. McGrath’s guitar skills are cutting edge and the sounds blend in well with the rumbles from Brodsky’s and Scofield’s bass guitar skills. Conners’s drumming mixes well with the guitar playing thanks to how each drum beat provides a sense of energy to the album. The most interesting part about this album is how the band incorporated six recordings of Scofield’s vibrant voice, and when he died, Brodsky took the helm and started to sing lead vocals on the record. The vocals by both men are phenomenal because their voices craft the music by singing in a clear way.
On the album there is a song titled “ Shake My Blood” and it is a rather fascinating song due to the meaning behind it. Brodsky mentioned in an interview how this song was written before Scofield’s death and when he died, the lyrics to the song were not finished. Brodsky took it upon himself to finish writing the song and it is about how grief rocked his world and how it is the most horrible feeling he has ever felt in his life. When listening to the song, Conners’s drumming starts at the beginning with a great beat of rock while the sweet sounds of guitar sounds play in the background by McGrath and Brodsky. Brodsky’s vocals on the song are unique because they provide an insight into an emotional man who is grieving about the loss of his bandmate
Another unique song on Final Transmission is the song “ Final Transmission.” Unlike the other songs on the album, this song is acoustic and there are fewer vocals on this track. but Scofield can be heard creating harmony by just singing the tune “do do do.” Scofield playing the bass guitar shows how intimate the song is because the low rumbles from the strings vibrate with a carefree tune and McGrath’s guitar playing is beautiful because he has a small repetitive guitar solo which provides a sense of serenity to the song. The story behind this track is emotional because it was the last time McGrath and Scofield rehearsed together, and when this track was found, McGrath was surprised and sad to know how this recording was still around. The song is bittersweet and well played but it is also a song of remembrance for the band.
There is a song that does stand out on the album and it is called All Illusion. The reason why it stands out is because of how the song was written. Brodsky wrote the original lyrics to the song but Scofield became known as the composer for this song because after his death the band found his journal which contained the lyrics he had written, so the band decided to use his lyrics instead of using the original lyrics written by Brodsky. In some ways the band wanted the remembrance of Scofield to shine on in this song because he was an influence to the band and toward the process of writing music. The drumming by Conners leads the song off with a great rock beat while McGrath’s mystical guitar sounds fill the atmosphere with a clear and concise tune and Scofield’s bass guitar is blaring low rumbles while his vocals fill the space with vibrant lyrics he composed in his journal. Also, thanks to how intense the guitarists are playing and the use of heavy guitar sounds, the music contributes to a sense of emotional space.
This album is a great one thanks to the meaning behind it and how the band chose to carry on with the music despite how much grief has hurt them. In some ways, Final Transmission is a tribute to Scofield and the band wants listeners to understand how creative he was as a musician and songwriter. Fans will not be disappointed with this album because the music is just as good as the band’s last release, White Silence, and it gives the fans the chance to hear the voice of Scofield one last time.