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Livin' The Good Life

By Sarah Dahnke in Arts & Entertainment on Sep 27, 2007 4:15PM

2007_9_26_thegoodlife.jpgWhen Tim Kasher isn't busy fronting the band Cursive and writing screenplays, he's penning songs and touring with his other project, The Good Life. The band began as a side project of sorts, but now has noted two albums under its belt: 2004's heart-wrenching The Album of the Year, which narrates a romantic-turned-nasty two-year relationship, and the recently released Help Wanted Nights, which actually serves as a soundtrack to Kasher's play of the same name. (Click here for a full discography of The Good Life's albums/EPs/seven inches.)

Booze, cheating lovers, passionate lovemaking, more booze, new friends, small-town life, and, well, booze, are fixtures of The Good Life's songs. The sound is surprisingly stripped-down compared with Kasher's work with Cursive, showcasing the band's Saddle Creek / Omaha roots, and this dual frontman's versatility. Help Wanted Nights is actually a bit country (for lack of a better word), further polarizing The Good Life from the in-your-face rock that has defined Cursive for so many years. Whether indie-folk music speaks to you or not, those who value lyrics over harmonies will likely get sucked in. Kasher isn't much of a vocalist, but his deliberate clarity in pronouncing each word means you can easily understand the narrative in each song -- much like a kids' sing-a-long for adults with alcohol-abuse issues.

Tomorrow's doubleheader at Subterranean will allow Chicagoans to get their first preview of The Good Life's newest album. The early show will likely be populated with under-age Conor Oberst wannabes. Proceed with caution.

The Good Life plays an all-ages show on Friday at 7:30 p.m. and an 18 + show at 10:30 p.m. Both shows are at Subterranean.

Promo photo of the band via Myspace.