by BellaJoli Gedeon
In 2017, Cavetown aired his first livestream on Youtube. Amongst a bright lava lamp on his nightstand and posters behind him on the wall, he answered questions and performed songs for his fans. “Hello? Is this working?” the singer-songwriter-producer asked, looking for a response in the chat room. Robin Skinner, most known for his music project Cavetown, has always shared a genuine connection with listeners ever since posting his original song “Haunted Lullaby” when he was only 14 years old. Today, Cavetown still maintains his DIY style as he ambitiously returns with worm food, reckoning with the more bitter than sweet feelings of growing up.
worm food is a breakthrough record that’s even more honest than Cavetown’s last. But here, he’s taken it a step further by adding more experimental elements – layering vocals of autotune on tracks like “a kind thing to do,” featuring Pierce the Veil’s Vic Fuentes, and “grey space,” where his longtime friend and collaborator, Chloe Moriondo, echoes in. Like past singles “Idea of Her” and “Sharpener” from previous work Man’s Best Friend, tracks “worm food” and “1994” go from clashing synths to a cathartic relief of calmness. Skinner opens up on worm food by grappling with heavy emotions enhanced by his own self-criticism.
Unlike almost all of the tracks on the record, “frog” is a fairytale conveying a sweeter sentiment – alluding to the love story “The Princess and the Frog.” In this aspect, Cavetown embraces a nature theme through his lyricism, specifically with “I’m your frog / Kiss me better all night long.” Many fans even line up for his concert, flying pride flags and wearing frog-themed hats to commemorate the single ever since he introduced it on tour last spring. “fall in love with a girl” is another high point on the record with fellow musician Beabadoobee joining him on the track, one that resonates with many LGBTQ+ listeners.
Though tracks “wasabi” and “i swear to god” seem slightly exhaustive, they bring up moments of sincerity from Skinner, who definitely has a lot to say. Cavetown’s discography clearly shows his admiration for animals, which doesn’t stop with worm food. For example, he references his cat quite a bit on “heart attack” and “juno.” The reflectiveness of Cavetown’s feelings are cleverly drawn out through the entire music-making process. The upbeat production of “kill u” shows his playfulness even through darkness in contrast to the more soft, mellow instrumentation of tracks “better” and “laundry day,” demonstrating his artistic range.
On worm food, Cavetown doesn’t hold back from making noise, giving both himself and listeners a voice to discuss relatable feelings – a talent he’s managed to sustain since the very beginning.