Band: CITY OF CATERPILLAR
Genres: Punk Rock / Hardcore / Post-Hardcore / Screamo / ExperimentalRelated artists: Pg.99, Ghastly City Sleep, Malady, Verse En Coma, Enemy Soil, Ancient Sky, Fairweather, Darkest Hour, Disinterment, Iron Reagan, New Millennium's Hope, Rope Cosmetology, Smoke Or Fire, Suppression and Majority Rule.
Country: Richmond, Virginia USA
Years Active: 2000-2003
Song: "Fucking Hero"
Album: "City Of Caterpillar"
Label(s): Level Plane Records / Adagio830 / Lilac Records / 6-60 Records / Sea Of Dead Pirates
This post's artist is from the May 2014 Mix. This is track #16.
You can download the May 2014 Mix#5 right here or get the new June Mix#6 here.
For fans of: Gospel, Godspeed You! Black Emperor, Congratulations, Angel Eyes, Birthday Boyz, Portraits Of Past, Funeral Diner, Mogwai, Who Calls So Loud..., Fugazi, (old) Rye Coalition, These Arms Are Snakes, Drive Like Jehu, Ruhaeda, The Exploder, Old Soul, Majority Rule, Pg.99, Captain Your Ship Is Sinking and Envy aka PROPER Screamo.
CITY OF CATERPILLAR is one of the most influential and diverse bands to come out of the United States in the last 2 decades and in terms of progressive hardcore/screamo they are probably at the top. The band was an offshoot of Pg.99 but played more more eclectic music and was much better, in my opinion.
CITY OF CATERPILLAR played bass-heavy punk with lots of feedback and atmospherics dispersed throughout the songs. Oh, and lots of chaos although most is restrained enough that it's not grind or emo-violence or anything like that, There are parts that have a very distinct slow, brooding and ambient feel, that make it pretty obvious what band it is that you're listening to. I love the dual screaming but there are bouts of some weird wailing/crying vocals that I'm not necessarily fond of. Regardless, the band's lone album is nearly flawless and is reviewed track-by-track below.
I was mentioning above about having some great, catchy parts. Take the opening track, "And You're Wondering How A Top Floor Could Replace Heaven" as a prime example, which after about 3 minutes delves into some serious post-rock/Mogwai territory with their patented groovy instrumental passage that lasts here for about 2 minutes until it climaxes in typical CITY OF CATERPILLAR glory and then meanders through the outro of the track. Did I mention the song is over 8 minutes long?
"A Heart Filled Reaction To Dissatisfaction" follows and is a mere 2-minutes. It opens with a killer bass riff before the vocals come in and steal the show. Seriously the vocalists have some amazing screams which are put at the forefront here as well as on the band's penultimate track, "Fucking Hero".
"Minute-Hour-Day-Week-Month-Year" is wedged in between 2 of the strongest tracks (this is track 3) and is another very long song that builds around a Godspeed You! Black Emperor ambient slow instrumental passage that subtly engages the listener for almost 5 minutes before getting into the meat of the track (which is actually quite short) and then moving on to what sounds just like "Blaise Bailey Finnegan" with noise, bells and some spoken word/movie clip inclusions to lead the 9-minute song to the finish line.
Getting back to "Fucking Hero", this song is definitely quintessential. My wife was the one who really got me to recognize the amazingness of the song. The last half of this song, from about 2:20 onwards, is unreal and my favourite CITY OF CATERPILLAR moment. It's unbelievable. The first half is about what you'd expect from one of the band's more aggressive songs, but when this last half starts to materialize the chances are you'll be floored if you've never heard this band before. The acoustic guitar builds for about 20 seconds before the CITY OF CATERPILLAR perfectly utilizes a driving hardcore breakdown along with a beautiful spacey riff and dual screaming vocals that are placed in an immaculate fashion. Holy shit this is so good it's kind of silly to continue this review. Eh, I'll make it quick.
"When Was The Last Time We Painted Over The Walls" is a chaotic number that has kind of a jungle-feel to it amidst the crazy first part and the ambient second part. I absolutely love the floating, swirling guitars and sexy bass riff that are the precursor to the tail-end of the song, which again uses phenomenally placed dual vocals.
"A Little Change Could Go A Long Ways" is the song that makes me think about how beautiful the stars in the night sky are before wanting to smash them to pieces. That's honestly what I think when I hear this 9-minute masterpiece. This song is so fucking good. It will do. Oh yes, it will do.
"Maybe They'll Gnaw Right Through" snips the chord of this 7-song album. It's progressive and reminds me of These Arms Are Snakes material, and although it's good and all, I don't think it's a fitting closer. I would personally have switched this with "A Little Change Could Go A Long Ways" because of the epic nature of the song, compared to one of the weaker songs on the album. Regardless, the close of a near-perfect album.
CITY OF CATERPILLAR has another release with demos and live songs that's decent but not worth writing about as the above descriptions have drained me and are much better than that compilation release.
Whether you've slept on these guys or just need a refresh, I'm sure we can all agree that CITY OF CATERPILLAR was and will always be amazing.
Click )==>here<==( to download the band's complete discography in mp3 form.
2000 - System 2600 split 7"
2001 - A Split Personality (split w/Pg.99) 7"
2001 - Live In New York City 7"
2002 - City Of Caterpillar cd/12"LP
2002 - Demo + Live Recording cd/12"LP (compiles 2000/2001 material)
(2002) CITY OF CATERPILLAR - "Fucking Hero" (from 'City Of Caterpillar')
(2002) CITY OF CATERPILLAR - "A Little Change Could Go A Long Ways" (from 'City Of Caterpillar')
(2001) CITY OF CATERPILLAR - "The Ghosts of Shadows Passing in City Streets" (from 'A Split Personality')
CITY OF CATERPILLAR out-of-print discography mp3 download