Arts

Caamp returns to Madison with new confidence, soulful tunes

Caamp jammed on the Majestic stage, selling out the entire venue with their new sound.

Image By: Emmett Sexton

When I saw Caamp open for Rainbow Kitten Surprise last year, I was immediately possessed by their sweet melodies, foot-tapping jams and their humble presence. 

So when I walked into Majestic this past Thursday and saw their name as the headliner and a winding line to get in, I was taken away. 

They filled the entire frickin’ venue. 

As they hopped on the stage, it was clear that they had a newfound credence and faith in their sound. They started off with the vibrating and twangy tune “Autumn Leaves,” complete with a rocked-out jam sesh at the end. 

“How you doing, guys?” Taylor Meier asked with a beaming, goofy smile. 

Their simple set was perfect: They don’t need fancy light shows, fog machines or elaborate screenplays to capture the love and positivity they emit via their music. The simplicity rather, as much as I hate to say it, contributes to their ~campy~ feel. 

The traditional, hoppy “Vagabond” and stinging, lofty “So Long, Honey” set the tone and proved that their vibe hasn’t changed much, if at all, since this new form of fame. 

“I Keep Going” was banjo-heavy and heart-warming, and they entered a new dimension with the ending, battling voices and instruments and dancing feet. 

“Misty” was eery, raspy and piercingly beautiful, displaying Taylor’s voice in a distressing way. This was a stark contrast to the next song, “So Cool,” which was warm and possessive. 

It wasn’t until “Iffy” that I was reminded that I was in fact at a concert, rather than a coffee shop or a graffitied basement. The crowd was booming, pounding feet and jumping around, screaming, “YOU’VE STOLEN AND WASTED ALL MY TIME!”

Next came the overwhelmingly adorable “Send the Fisherman,” involuntarily swaying the enchanted masses as one. To make things even better, the slower tempo and mischievous grins from Evan and Matt completed the piece as an EXPERIENCE. 

Also, watching Taylor giggle his way through assuring us that we are, in fact, “shit outta luck,” was the wholesome content one should expect from them.

The elevated and sweet “See the World” was shockingly powerful and soothing — I was convinced I really could pack my car, get behind the wheel and let my feelings steer the way. 

Their cover of “Blood Red Sentimental Blues” by Cotton Jones was comforting and snap-worthy, and even, dare I say it, sunshine-daydreamy.

“Hey Joe” had a twangy, funky twist, with an absolutely WEAKENING falsetto by Taylor at the end. All three members had a little pep in their step, throwing out some sweet dance moves sporadically throughout the rest of the performance. 

Taylor then jumped on the drums and WENT OFF during “Going to the Country.” Evan was next to DO HIS THING, and Matt surely didn’t hold back. 

“Common Man” was perfectly chaotic, challenging the audience’s feet to keep up to pace with the aggressively folksy bop. 

Thus, Caamp halted their performance, but to our pleasure, hopped back out asking, “Did y’all want another tune?” 

Oh boy, did we.

Getting called “fucking beautiful,” as a unit by Taylor didn’t hurt the possessive joy that was radiating across Majestic’s balconies, pits and corridors. 

“All the Debts I Owe” and “Strawberries” completed the evening, leaving the audience with a euphoric high, some sunny grins and probably a few blisters from tapping away all night. 

Caamp did not disappoint, and I am thrilled to see how big their next headlining tour is. 


Sam Jones is an almanac editor for the Daily Cardinal. To read more of her work, click here. 

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