Friday, June 9, 2023

Cage the Elephant returns with songs of heartbreak, hope with ‘Social Cues’


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Photo courtesy of Wikipedia

Story by Meraleigh Queener / Contributing Writer 

Cage The Elephant was formed in 2006 in Bowling Green, Kentucky, and relocated to England, where they erratically and unmistakably reached the English charts, lighting their path to success. They’re widely known for their distinct style engulfed in the various tasteful elements of indie rock, alternative rock, garage rock, punk and punk blues, revolting a personal identity in each individual song of every album release.

The band hit the ground running writing and releasing music with an unrealistic kinetic energy to critically acclaimed success charting “Ain’t No Rest for The Wicked” in the Top 40 in the UK (winning the creators of films, TV shows and video games), “Shake Me Down,” “Come a Little Closer,” “Cigarette Daydreams” and “In One Ear.”

Now heeds a new take, capturing the heart and mind of fans across the world. Ultimately, a new chain flourished, escaping the past of the band’s uniquely unbalanced ceiling of comfort zones: the release of “Social Cues.” Some fans and critics believe that “Social Cues” producer John Hill has unraveled a freedom of intimacy, depth and personal desire, giving the band an open space to explore an unlimited dimension of their sound. Their summing, laid back, bouncy, ambient distorted tones builds up to a gravitational lyrical theme of broken love. The first widely known single, “Ready to Let Go,” paints an organic momentous heartbreak where vocalist Shultz is “trying to hide this damage done.”

The glooming “What I am Becoming” reveals Shultz’s taunts of regret and apology rather than anger as he chants, “I’m so sorry, honey / For what I’m becoming.” Both pieces heavily punctuate Shultz’s marriage falling apart with lyrical cues on indicating statements, “You sound so shifty,” and describing an “unfaithful friend.”

However, the band pronounced the ability to convey a whimsical sense of hope and melancholy in “Skin and Bones,” singing, “Let the love light guide me home.” Later in “The War is Over” the artists surface in bright, synthetic tones with reverberated slipping vocals, concluding in both light and dark sword: “One day you will find love was on both sides, the war is over.”

A throw-off, sufficed in their track “Love’s the Only Way,” dramatically unfolds a ring of despair in a cinematic string-orchestrated introduction. “Night Running” is a void of clean streak as a catchy darkness evaporates and overflows coldly: “In a world of secrets and demons and people hiding from the sun.”

As one of their most devastating and tragic songs yet, the album ends with the track “Goodbye,” in which Shultz sings, “I won’t cry. Lord knows how hard we tried.”

“Social Cues” takes a turn to personal reflection distilled in abundance of uncertainty, hope and grief while cultivating an abstract correlation in their stylistic nature. This album may summon themes of heartbreak from Shultz and the band members, but listeners will find themselves falling in love.

nTo contact Lifestyles Editor Mamie Lomax, email

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