With the name Caveman, and the album title Before the World, a listener might be half expecting to hear an album dedicated solely to pre-historic tribal funk rock. Not quite. The band, however, does take an evolutionary approach in making this album.

The first two selections of the disc seem misplaced and undeveloped. Moving forward with the third tune “Message from the Indians,” the band starts to gain momentum and progress, steadily growing through phases, mixing genres… and almost overdoing it in process.

The “Birth” trilogy serves as the meat of the album, as the band struggles to obtain an identity with the variety of music types being tested, from rock and funk to world beat fusion, and into the depths of acid jazz and beyond. With such a mixture of mayhem, the band comes off sounding like a classic rock band making an album totally devoid of lyrical content. With satisfactory guitar work that is aimless at times, the band achieves a fair amount of groove with “Delta Caveman,” and shows their lighter side with “National Anthem for a Happy Nation.”

All of this is not to say that the instrumental album is not enjoyable, because it is. You are almost intrigued to listen further to see where the band is going and just how diverse this band can be. Listening to just how the Caveman can evolve in this album is interesting. Yet, as with evolution, a listener can only hope that further efforts will concentrate less on how the music is created and more on the why.

Scott Rosner
Go See Live Music!

[Published on: 11/28/02]

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