Caveman's Coco Beware was one of my favorite records of 2011, with dreamy guitar- and keyboard-blended pop songs that hit all my musical sweet spots. I love hearing a guitar-based record full of subtlety; one that's not simply over-driven beyond distortion. Caveman writes hit songs, and for me, that means melodies you can carry around in your head, not just your pocket. For pop music, these songs are full of space — they're spontaneous and seem effortless.
Caveman's members live in Brooklyn and are craftsmen on many levels. The cool-looking and great-sounding guitars you'll see in this Tiny Desk Concert look old and beat-up, but they're not. They were made by the band's lead guitarist, Jimmy Carbonetti, who has a shop in the East Village called Cobra Guitars. The guitars are built, one at a time, with names like "Cavebean," "Cavemaster" and "Old Friend" — also a Caveman song title. If you don't know Caveman, you'll hear that knack for craftsmanship on Coco Beware, and see it even in this stripped-down setting.
- "My Time"
- "Easy Water"
- "Old Friend"
Producer and Editor: Bob Boilen; Videographer: Michael Katzif; Audio Engineer: Kevin Wait; photo by Doriane Raiman/NPR