So just gonna say this right off the bat. This is a solid singer/songwriter album. Cataldo is one of the few artists making waves when it comes to being a singer/songwriter in a post-man-with-an-acoustic-guitar-world. Electronic & hip/hop influences will continue to positively influence indie music, but Cataldo is finding ways to stay in his lane without compromising innovation to his sound and indie music as a whole. If you are looking for a song to grab a hold of, please check out the song ‘White Lighter’ below:
I actually want to focus on the album as a whole.But hold that thought for a paragraph or two, because I’d like to put this album into context. I promise its worth it! Follow me on another brief journey down life as a member of KZUU… Something that our listeners should probably know is that we get sent a lot of music… And I mean A LOT. Here’s a shameless plug of all the artists that are just some of our station favorites (this is our list from indie music):
There’s an additional theres over 50 artists with a variety of different tastes. We sort through a lot of chaos when it comes to music. Each music director probably each listens to an additional 2 to 3 albums a week that don’t make it to our station favorite playlist. And on top of that, they put music into every show, random playlists throughout the week for social media, and a review for our website every couple weeks. I understand that’s a lot to process. And forgive me, I’m not trying to bring the concept of math to KZUU… But why is this important? Non-Commercial radio either gets the bad wrap for having not good enough music to play on ‘real’ radio, or being part of a small/niche crowd that is excited to finally be listening something different from ‘dumb top-40 radio’. So its hard to weave between those two mindsets. I like to think KZUU is not just restless, or trying to find that next ‘it’ artist. And instead is playing music from diverse backgrounds around the world and from every genre. And with the concept of inspiring other artists/listeners on how to digest music. Thanks for getting through that backstory… And now the question: What does this mean for Cataldo’s: ‘Literally Main Street’?
First, the title ‘Literally Main Street’. This might seem conflicting with the statement of being innovative in music. But while Cataldo isn’t rewriting how we digest music, he is taking a stab at what it means to have a central message, and how important writing an album means to stick to that message. Upon the first full listen through this album, one might notice the stream of consciousness perpetuated through each track. That actually is intentional in many respects. An important fact about this album: Eric Anderson (Cataldo), wrote all songs from this album in the span of 24 hours. There can definitely be an argument to be made about writing an entire album in a day being short sighted. To me that argument would seem valid for the brand new artist. But Eric is a seasoned veteran when it comes to writing music. With 5 other records under Eric’s belt, there is probably something cathartic about getting all your thoughts out in one go.
The album culminates to quirky song titles like ‘Ding Dong Scrambled Eggs’, and 4 straight song titles that start with the letter ‘W’. Or lyrics as visually stimulating like: ‘Golf ball bouncing in the gas tank’ from ‘They Don’t Know About Us’ and ‘Little kiss on the mouth, little thunder in a drought’ on ‘Way Way Back’. Again quirky of course. And maybe even a bit too youthful to the serious listener. But when it comes to being relatable to those who try not to take themselves that seriously, or the one who is perfectly fine with embracing the weird, Cataldo has you covered.
This album as a whole explores common themes like being in a relationship, and contemplating how it all may have fallen apart. The fact that this album was written in 24 hours leads me to believe he was speaking from the heart when it comes to explaining his thoughts of how he came to the conclusion of each song. It was almost refreshing to see someone as happy to get it all out there and not focus on how it will be received because the artist knows who they are.
Cataldo is one of those bands who wasn’t on my personal radar, but always knew he talented. I will definitely be paying more attention to him just for his opinions on his approach of life and how he uses music as his moniker.
Sounds like: Ben Gibbard and Michael Stipe but with just acoustic guitars.
Try: ‘Ding Dong Scrambled Eggs’, ‘Literally Main Street’ & ‘White Lighter‘