Before we discuss your new record I just wanted to ask a few questions about the debut album. “This is Hazleville” was a very important album for me and I was wondering if there was a story behind the song “Frontline” ?
Yes. It was supposed to be a song about striving to reach your potential. Never stopping trying to improve yourself. It’s a comment on how everyone is in the same boat and how much work you have to do to poke up above the rest. It’s kind of self help! Motivational I guess.
What was one of your favorite moments in the whole process of recording and promoting the album?
Playing to a packed tent at V festival 2006 with everyone singing “Glorious” That was pretty damn grand. The entire time after the album’s release was one highlight after another.
Now, onto the new record. Where was the album recorded and who produced it?
We recorded Distraction with Barney Barnicott in many scary barns on a secluded farm in Yorkshire. We spent about 6 weeks slowly going mad…. You can hear the barn all the way through the album. We sang in huge silos next to combine harvesters and various farm machinery, which was pretty weird. It was great being so cut off from normality we could really focus on the job in hand and I think the record has really defined our sound because of the focus.
What can you tell us about your upcoming single “Keep an Open Mind”? When can we expect to see it out?
Keep an Open Mind was penned by our drummer Reuben and it’s released in the UK on April 21st. We really tried to all have input in this record, it’s a genuine joint effort and I guess that makes it the definitive Captain record. You can hear a bit of all of us throughout. KAOM is about rising above your pride and realizing it’s the same for everyone so you’ve got to live side by side and not let your darker side win. The whole record explores the notion of the shadow self and when and where it can take control, what it contributes to who you are.
Now, the new record sounds like the sound has shifted a bit. Can you tell us some of the new influences on the new record? Will we see more organ sounds like in “Animal” ?
The new sound is pretty different. It was inevitably going to be cos we always new we were going to work with a different producer. But we’ve developed as musicians and songwriters too. There are lots of different but reoccurring sounds on this album, an accordion for example pops up in several songs…it adds a melancholic darkness….The influences are less musical and more about what was happening in our heads in the time between the albums – It is an exploration of the self and what that actually is. Thinking deeply about this opens little boxes in your mind you never knew existed and it’s an enlightening experience, if at times a little hard to swallow.
How do you feel about the shift toward the downloads? I did notice the band has a strong web presence. Or do you feel this is all just necessary?
The industry is in a very strange place at the moment. The internet is really forcing the labels and bands to think and behave differently. It’s impossible to predict anything now and old foolproof formulas for releasing singles and albums have gone out the window. We now have to think much more creatively then before…..which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. We write the music and we’ll adapt to whatever it takes to get it in the ears of the people. Soon we’ll be having album chips fitted into our ear drums.
Any bands we should be listening to?
At the moment I’m loving The National, Hotchip and who doesn’t like MGMT?? They’re bloody everywhere. Really liking LCD Soundsystem and rediscovering our love of My Bloody Valentine.
How is the rest of the year looking like for the band? Can we expect to see you at any festivals in the summer?
Well there’ll be another single in June and the Album in early July so we’re hoping for a hum dinger of a year with lots and lots of touring and yes, many, many festivals. We’re also going to be writing like crazy people.
By John Siwicki