A&E » Music, A&E

Cayucas: A sunny step back in time

Cayucas harken back to when every kid wore Chucks because that was the only sneaker choice.
June 26, 2013

The Cayucas are searching for an elusive feeling with their debut album “Bigfoot,” a wistful expression of Peter Pan syndrome.

Cayucas references Cayucos, a sleepy old surf town of about 2,500 people that lead singer Zach Yudin heard about as a student at Cal Poly. The town is in a time warp, untouched by invading tourists, a last vestige of days when kids stopped playing when it got dark out.

The album epitomizes that town — an indie-pop homage to wave-lapped toes and sun-touched girls.

“I think a couple of songs were written that felt like lyrically something nostalgic made sense,” Yudin said. “I kind of thought that things that happen growing up make good songs.”

That sentiment holds particularly true for their single, “High School Lover,” a song reveling in the longing and awkwardness that characterizes adolescent relationships between the sexes and the ultimate realization that maybe opportunity knocked and no one answered. In this case, it all started the moment “I saw you on the back of some guy’s bicycle.”

While audiences can undoubtedly relate to those moments of anxiety and bashful discovery during youth, this kind of subject matter can be negative.

Over the course of an album, it can seem a bit over-indulgent and opens Cayucas to criticism that their material is devoid of depth, only good for spacing out to during the dog days. Then again, that might be just what they are aiming for.

There’s a lot of the Beach Boys to be seen in Cayucas; they’ve embraced that surf-rock sensibility and adapted it to make a sort of coastal indie.

 “I think the songs have a happy vibe, but they are not necessarily lyrically over the top joyful,” Yudin said. “There isn’t a song about having a beach bonfire and hanging out with your friends playing guitar. I’d never want to be generic like that.”

Starting at 21, the desire to make music came rather late for Yudin.

“I’ve only been playing the guitar for five years,” Yudin said. “I’m not the greatest; I can play just enough to write a song.”

While teaching in Japan in 2008 Yudin became exposed to the extensive variety of ways sampling can be used in songwriting — an odd genesis for his interest given that Cayucas does not embody an electronic sound. At roughly two years old, Cayucas is still figuring a few things out; much like Yudin was five years back.

It is a clear indicator, however, of a willingness to grow — though up may not be the right direction. They will be well served expanding upon their jukebox aesthetic.

 

 

What: Cayucas

When: 8 p.m., Friday

Where: 7th Street Entry, 701 First Ave., Minneapolis

Cost: $10

Age: 18+

 

 

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