Miami’s punk/hardcore scene is incestuous. I mean, I assume most cities’ are, but Miami especially. This guy was in this band with his brother who was also in this band with these 2 other guys who started out in some band that was really popular in South Florida and was friends with that band on Victory back when they were releasing relevant records and they used to tour together and they probably should have toured more. Well, actually, that band recently broke up and the two brothers are in different bands, but I think at least one of those bands shares a member of the brothers’ band, or maybe all the members are in both bands except the brothers. Wait, maybe the one brother isn’t in it or maybe it’s his cousin and he’s in like three other bands all with each ex-member of that grind and/or sludge band… anyway, they just formed 2 weeks ago and I’m pretty sure Robotic Empire is putting out their 7” they haven’t written yet and I think they’re playing a ten song set tomorrow.
6 years of living in Miami and this is how I felt at just about every local show I went to. Some of the members of Capsule were mentioned above, but I have no fucking clue which. I do know I have had some interaction with each member; guitarist/vocalist Colin Smith played guitar/drums/bass in countless bands including some my old band played shows with; no matter what band Ryan Haft has been in I have always admired his guitar playing and thought of him as one of the most innovative guitar players in the Miami scene. Kind of why I thought it was criminal that he was playing bass in Capsule, but he’s since been moved to guitar; drummer, well, now bassist/vocalist Eric Hernandez even played at my (dead) band’s CD release party and has also filled in on drums for both Torche and Kyelsa; and newest addition, live drummer Alex De Renzis played drums for Adore Miridia (whose shows I frequented) and a slew of other bands. Alex also ran a weekly themed night at a bar that my friends and I would go to almost every week. What they all have in common other than being in Capsule (and the first paragraph) is that they all probably don’t know who the fuck I am.
Sorry for the digression. On to what they sound like. Although Capsule is the band of the week this is really more of a focus on their latest release No Ghost, but since I don’t really do album reviews here we are. Not that Capsule’s past releases aren’t similar, quite the contrary, but this just happens to be the newest one. If it’s a screamo (please read “origins…”) record it’s by far the heaviest screamo record I’ve ever heard. If it’s a post-hardcore record, again, heaviest post-hardcore record I’ve ever heard. If it’s metal? Well, they still hold their weight. This band almost never slows down. Constant angular technical riffs against relentless pounding drums ala Lifetime of Gray Skies-era Anodyne, and thick pulverizing bass, the latter being the final blow that makes you feel like the gravity has been quadrupled. I say “almost never slows down” because there are tracks like “Isn’t Us” or the completely instrumental final song “_” that do alter the pacing. “Isn’t Us” is definitely one of the heaviest songs on the album and provides some head-nod inducing grooves. The vocals are a gruff singing/yelling, kind of like a mixture of Hot Water Music and KEN Mode. Actually, Capsule does kind of sound like if KEN Mode recruited The Fall of Troy guitarist and asked him to take the bubble gum out of his riffs.
Where they started: 2008’s Blue (I think)
Where you should start: Well, since most of this entry was inspired by No Ghost that would be my suggestion. Blue is a good second release to get by them and the split with Furnace is another fine couple of songs. I’d hold off on diving into the self titled release until you know you’re a fan.
Essential Song: Actually, you can sample a good chunk of the record through this player.
Essential Live Video: Why not a full set?