Tag Archives: Cake


Let’s Play Two!

January 14th, 2013

Cake – The Bowery Ballroom – January 11, 2013

“What song should we play next?” John McCrea asked the sold-out crowd at the end of Cake’s first set at The Bowery Ballroom on Friday night. That line, muttered by the band’s lead singer as he struggled with a cold that only slightly hindered his iconic monotone voice, an onslaught of requests: “The Distance,” “Short Skirt/Long Jacket,” “I Will Survive!” After agreeing on and burning through a standout version of “Never There,” the group retired backstage for a short break—after all, since there was no opener, the band was able to play an epic two-set show.

The Lower East Side venue’s 550-person capacity allowed for an unusually intimate setting for a band with a career that’s been marked by several hits on rock charts over the past 20-plus years, and I overheard several people express their gratitude for being able to see the group in such a small place. McCrea and Co. lived up to the hopes of those bystanders, and the frontman engaged the crowd throughout the night, splitting the audience into two groups for the shouting choruses in Cake’s most famous songs. Like a magician, McCrea used his gravitas as a sort of sleight of hand to trick iPhone-touting people in the crowd into joining in the festivities. In all, the night reflected Cake’s essence as a punchy and fun band. —Alex Kapelman


Cake – Terminal 5 – April 21, 2011

April 22nd, 2011

Cake - Terminal 5 - April 21, 2011

Photos courtesy of Andy Keilen | spartanmarchingband.smugmug.com/music


Cake – SummerStage – September 16, 2010

September 17th, 2010

Cake - SummerStage - September 16, 2010

Photos courtesy of Andy Keilen | spartanmarchingband.smugmug.com/Music


Cake – Terminal 5 – May 29, 2009

June 1st, 2009


“See this watch? I’m taking it off…because time doesn’t exist.” That’s how John McCrea started Cake’s sold-out show at Terminal 5 on Friday night. There was no opener, but that seems typical for a group that battled its former label and achieved much more success than anyone expected. Onstage, McCrea stood next to a six-foot potted tree, which was eventually given to the audience member who correctly identified it. (The winner had to promise to take pictures with it. “Every few years or so as the tree gets larger and you get smaller and more decrepit, we can watch the progress.”)

Maybe this had something to do with the band going green: The show began with tracks from an as-yet-untitled album recorded in a solar-powered studio. “Those are some new songs you might not recognize from our album, which we will release whenever we feel like it, because we have no record company.” To cheers, he sarcastically responded, “Maybe we won’t ever release it…. We should release ringtones instead.”

McCrea hit a vibraslap to add one of the band’s signature sounds to Gabriel Nelson’s and Paulo Baldi’s deep grooves, while Vincent DiFiore blasted through another trumpet solo. It’s this unusual combination of elements that leads to Cake’s blend of country-funk-lounge-pop, which never ceased to move the crowd. McCrea demanded an impressive amount of audience participation—dividing concertgoers to sing separate harmony parts and directing the sea of arms. There wasn’t a static moment at the three-plus-hours party. —Jason Dean


Grow a Pair: Win Free Tickets to See Cake on May 29, 2009

May 26th, 2009


After 18 years together—and with a new album coming out this summer—Cake shows no signs of slowing down. They hit Terminal 5 this Friday for a sold-out show. But you’ve still got a chance to see the band live even if you don’t have tickets because The House List is giving away two of them. Just fill out the form below, listing your name, e-mail address, which show you’re trying to win tickets to (Cake, 5/29) and a brief message telling us the funniest (true) thing to happen to you over Memorial Day weekend and you just might be the one to Grow a Pair of free tickets. Eddie Bruiser, obviously, will e-mail the fortunate winner by noon on Friday, May 29th. Good luck.

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