words by Sam Houghton
From the high-decibel wails of Tim Cuff’s vocal chords, it sounds as if at one point in his life he had wandered the mean streets of Russia, drinking heavily and composing theatrical numbers in his head. But somewhere along the line the locals failed to appreciate his sounds, so his muse turned towards sad themes and cheap drink with a joking front.
Back in Brooklyn on the stage front and behind his keyboard, Cuff’s persona seems like the village clown, tanked on booze, tattooed with mocking smiles and howling in his erratic but trained voice. Live and recorded, the music he composes as Timatim Fitfit, his five-piece band, his muse transcends into a sort of goofy Russian opera. The band has a traditional folk vibe with soft drums and the main leads coming from Cuff’s piano and a very Fiddler on the Roof fiddle. But underneath this goofy front is a genuine sadness, like Cuff understands the life of the vagabonding bard, a sort of sensitive village drunkard in some late Irish Novel. The genuineness gives the band a dynamic that sets them apart from a mere Cake cover band and into one with form and a solid point. The best songs Timatim Fitfit has to offer are “All The World of Carbon” and “No How.” It is important to mention that in the background of “All The World of Carbon” there is a backing vocal that brings the music to an almost trendy new level. It has strong traces of Fleet Foxes and is delightful to the ears.