Together again, indie-emo Cursive not interested in fame

Jinae West

Cursive is like that good-looking on-again, off-again couple everybody knows should just stay together.

But despite the band’s fair share of speedbumps on the road to semi-stardom, Cursive passes the test of time with flying colors. Since 1995, the self-described “folk metal” quartet has found a comfortable niche within the boundaries of critical praise and notability.

Hailing from Omaha, Neb., band members Tim Kasher, Matt Maginn, Steve Pendersen and Clint Schnase formed the original Cursive ensemble and later released their debut album, Such Blinding Stars for Starving Eyes, in 1997. The group eventually separated in 1998, then rejoined, then separated and rejoined again.

Wash. Rinse. Repeat.

Cursive’s latest effort, Happy Hollow, features Kasher, Maginn, Schnase and relative “newcomer” Ted Stevens, who replaced Pendersen in 1999. Gretta Cohn also left Cursive in 2005 to pursue other interests.

Besides the lack of Cohn’s classical influence, Happy Hollows feels different – something Maginn attributes to the band’s furtherance of development.


Playing with Mastadon, Against Me!, These Arms are Snakes

Where? House of Blues

When? May 14 at 7 p.m.

How much? $20.50 – $28

“It’s slightly more upbeat. It’s just more of an expansion on what we have done in the past,” Maginn said. “To broaden our sound and not feel restricted. We explored more upbeat stuff, more linear stuff. Lyrically, it was quite different. It was a fun step – different in style and sound.”

It seems as though that’s all Cursive wants. It’s all they ever asked for in the first place. Fame is just a perk – the complimentary vanilla ice cream on a slice of apple pie. Or the questionable coleslaw that seems to come with just about everything on the restaurant menu.

“We grew up doing this because it was fun,” he said. “The idea we can do it now and survive is a thrill, really. Nobody really expected it. We started doing it for the sheer pleasure of playing, writing and performing, and we still are.”

And while Cursive plans to continue to play, write and perform its way across the United States for the next several months, Maginn said the group’s most sought after gig has yet to be booked.

“We’d like to do a sitcom,” he said.

When asked for its working title, Maginn hesitated for a few seconds.

“Mount WhatEverest,” he quipped. “That’s our ultimate goal.”

Contact ALL correspondent Jinae West at [email protected].