We take because we are fragile, because we know it never really matters who we were meant to be. What matters is that we do more than just tiptoe forward. That we assemble the worn versions of the things we take into messy piles – to keep from forgetting or maybe just so we know what to forget and what to keep.
CAIRO is the soundtrack to the things we have taken and left behind. They are the soundtrack to both taking and leaving, the nuance of a 2 a.m. exhale or a pretty pair of eyes in a crowded room. They are the cadence of everyday life.
Four people should not get along so well. It’s strange. Unsettling, even. But they do. When one falters, the other three create symmetry.
On stage, Nate Daniels becomes taller, rising from whispers to long-winded bursts then back down again, his fingers dancing along the guitar strings. Dante Berardi Jr. moves in tandem, stealing glances of the science experiment at his feet, a network of twisting cables and blinking lights that coalesce into reverb-soaked guitar riffs. The sweetness of Caitlin Grieve’s violin weaves its way through the wall of sound, keeping the whole damn thing from just bursting at the seams. While Matt Sullivan’s drumming tumbles in the background, an academic earmarking pages in the ever-evolving narrative of CAIRO’s stories.
There’s no reason why it should work. But it does.
You could call it folk. Or rock. Or ambience. Or experimental. But that would be denying the parts that make a whole. It’s real! It’s personal! It is love! Yes, love! That messy gooey thing that we so desperately hope will make us whole. We can all agree on this, can we not? It’s absurd that CAIRO works. But you only need to listen to A History of Reasons to understand. Or better yet. See them live. Let the songs make your chest pound. Breathe the whole thing in. Ask nothing of the chaos but let it take from you. It will give back. We promise. Watch it grow in front of your very eyes. Until you feel whole. Let it live in the marrow of your achy bones, make your teeth chatter with it’s assuredly unsure-ness.
And when it is all done – the reverb-soaked guitar and weaving violin, the whispers and harmonies, the academic earmarks, the frailty and love – collect what you have taken into your hands and press it into a tiny pile called CAIRO. This is one of the keepers.