Eclectic, masterful, melodious New York rockers The Cringe are set to debut live in the UK when they join party rock pranksters Steel Panther for a run of 7 already nearly-sold-out shows in March, prior to the release of their fourth studio album, ‘Hiding In Plain Sight’, on April 14th, through Sony / RED. Dates are:-
Tues 18th March – NEWCASTLE, O2 Academy Weds 19th March – GLASGOW, O2 Academy Thurs 20th March – SHEFFIELD, O2 Academy (sold out) Sat 22nd March – CAMBRIDGE, Corn Exchange Sun 23rd March – BRISTOL, O2 Academy (sold out) Mon 24th March – NOTTINGHAM, Rock City Weds 26th March – LONDON, O2 Academy Brixton
Since forming in 2004, The Cringe have been wowing American audiences with their powerful mix of grungy, garage punk grit, and masterfully crafted radio-friendly melodies, winning high-profile supports slots with acts such as The New York Dolls, The Hold Steady and The Bravery.
The foursome’s diverse, yet highly distinctive, sound is powered by the dynamic songwriting of band leader John Cusimano, whose skill for seamlessly blending aggressive grooves with infectious hooks and insightful lyrics calls to mind the best of the Foo Fighters and Soundgarden. A gifted musician, Cusimano is the gusty voice of the group, and also plays rhythm guitar and keyboards. His many talents are matched by those of his seasoned and versatile bandmates, drummer Shawn Pelton (Saturday Night Live band, Bruce Springsteen, Sheryl Crow), lead guitarist and singer James ‘Roto’ Rotondi (Mr Bungle, Air), and bassist Jonny Matias (Crash Moderns).
Drawing on a diverse range of influences, ‘Hiding In Plain Sight’ is the most accomplished effort yet from a band who plainly possess the musical chops to pull off such an audacious mix of styles. Produced The Cringe themselves, the album was polished by mastering whiz Emily Lazar, who came to it fresh from her award-winning work on the Foo Fighters’ ‘Wasting Light’. Her suitability for the job is clear from the outset, as opener ‘Rushing Through The World’ kicks off in a blur of muscle and melody that the Foos or QOTSA could be proud of. Its blistering riffs and Pelton’s rampaging drums contrast sharply with the meditative message of the lyrics, which appeal to listeners to step back from the pace of modern life and pause to take notice.
In less reflective moments, The Cringe eagerly embrace the frantic, intense flavours of their home city, cooking up tunes like ‘Gotta Find A Way’, which hums with the livewire energy of hustlin’ Big Apple punks from the Dolls to D-Generation. Downbeat ‘n’ dirty number ‘Get Me Some’ meanwhile evokes all the extremes of experience to be had in a New York minute, with its talk of “bad blood downtown” and “sidewalks crawling with hot rats”. Equally though, ‘Hiding In Plain Sight’ is not afraid to take inspiration from further afield, and ‘Lord Jim’ hears The Cringe splice an odd-time Southern blues riff with Kyuss-style desert rock grooves, while on delicately crafted ballad ‘Make Me Something’, several shades of Neil Young hide not far beneath the weary, sun-weathered surface.
With songs like these, The Cringe are sure to deliver a compelling show when they come to the UK in March, and they can’t wait to hit the road. Guitarist James Rotondi says “probably the only thing more insanely fun than opening for Steel Panther in LA, would be opening for them on a UK tour. Like Steel Panther, we’ve got screaming vocals, a shred-tastic guitar player, and a mountain-man drummer; unlike Steel Panther, we lack quality dick jokes, fishnet clothing, half-naked groupies, and killer hair-metal choruses. Save your panties for the Panther; we’re just out to earn a little classic rock respect, a pint of John Courage, and a good ol’ time in the land that gave us The Who!”