Okay, maybe we should just ignore this Birmingham band’s name before entering into a discussion about their music. It’s difficult to not mention it, though – it’s just crying out to be mocked…
Not too much is known about the Captain. What we do know is that they’ve produced a seven-track mini album that sounds like it’s been influenced by Coldplay and the The Beatles. As every other review you read seems to allude to these two groups they’re probably not altogether useful comparisons, but you get a rough idea. Opener ’Algebra’ has a distinct whiff of early Coldplay in its composition, but unfortunately fails to excite by being a tad too repetitive. Its dark, brooding nature certainly holds promise, as does the Hammond-led ’Piano’. It’s not until ’Dark Clouds’ (where they talk of a ‘Slow death by daytime TV’) that you really get to hear the McCartney leanings in full effect – possibly the most obvious song on the album.
As you’d expect from a demo, the production means the instruments often come across muffled and as a result have a hard time to bask in their own respective glories, but on songs such as ’Things You Threw Away’ you can still just about make out the harmonies and electric guitar. Their sound is unabashedly retro, with closer ’Excuses’ pointing toward Badly Drawn Boy at his most minimal and laid-back. There’s definitely promise to be found amidst the 60s worshipping debris and as bands like The Stands and The Coral have done so well for themselves in recent months, there’s no reason why Captain Wilberforce won’t get noticed on some level. They would need a hit single, though, and this mini album fails to provide that much needed stand-out moment.
5Andrew Farley's Score