I Am Gemini (saddle Creek)

Reviewed by Doug Freeman, Fri., Nov. 2, 2012

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I Am Gemini (Saddle Creek)

At the turn of the century, Nebraska indie label Saddle Creek made its name behind Bright Eyes and Cursive, and the evolution of that angst – if not so much maturing – has posed a challenge for both projects. Whereas Conor Oberst has gone into the mystic, Tim Kasher continues thrashing against his demons with intricate punk operas, and Cursive's seventh LP is even more ambitiously constructed than 2003's The Ugly Organ. Archetypal struggle of twins separated at birth and grown into dichotomies of good/evil, light/dark, etc, Gemini powers the Omaha quartet's compelling narrative. The dark dives of openers "This House Alive" and "Warmer Warmer" unsettle even as "The Sun and Moon" and "Double Dead" poke more playfully pop, and centerpiece "Twin Dragon/Hello Skeleton" bares the bipolar struggle. With Kasher's howl aging into a gritty melodic power, Cursive keeps its stride without compromising. (Fri., Orange stage, 2:35pm)


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