In 2005, Matthew Schultz found himself stuck in Bowling Green, Ky. He claimed “it was the kind of place where if you didn’t play football, or you were a little bit different, people thought you were gay.” Schultz, not wanting to hopelessly become a product of his environment, quit his high school football team and started the rock band Cage the Elephant. Schultz sang lead vocals, his brother Brad took rhythm guitar, while fellow high school friends Lincoln Parish, Daniel Tichenor and Jared Champion played lead guitar, bass and drums, respectively.
Cage the Elephant exploded onto the scene by rocking the pants off the crowd at Austin, Texas’ SXSW festival in 2007, landing them a record deal with EMI. The band moved to East London, UK to record its self-titled debut album, which was released in 2008. Its single “Ain’t No Rest for the Wicked” went on to reach #32 on the UK Singles Charts, as well as having a stint as iTunes’s Free Single of the Week.
Claiming to draw its influences from classic rock, punk rock and 90s alternative-rock artists, Cage the Elephant’s sound hails from Matthew Schultz’s rap-rock, unpolished deliveries and the group’s sleazy, garage-rock, two-guitar attack, all of which is thrown together with an energetic rhythm section with a little more than a hint of funk. Imagine crossing the Beastie Boys with the Stooges, injected with traces of Southern rock.
NME described one Cage the Elephant’s high-octane, stage dive-filled sets as “exhilarating, 100mph stuff, with the band not even considering stopping for breath during their half hour of relentless funk’n’roll.”
This Friday, Cage the Elephant’s American tour stops at the Paradise Rock Club in Boston. Opening for the Kentucky quintet will be Morning Teleportation and As Tall as Lions, making this one show that fans of pure, rebellious rock and roll will not want to miss.