Reviewed by sheikh ahmed (absorb.org)
a remarkable album, no doubt about that. the range of sounds, moods and textures that are created throughout it's fifty odd minutes are impressive and would last some artists their entire career. capitol k are kristian craig robinson and cliff harris. two individuals who have journeyed across the world during their lives. this so obviously evident on opener 'song for banana' where a cacophony of background and everyday sounds are piled on top of one another while a seemingly improvised riff warps and twists in between the beats.
after the drum workout of 'little submarine' we get some cool vocal action from kristian has he laments on 'janome home', layered guitars and spooky wibbly wobbly effects all build up in intensity as kristian sounds more and more pained. 'doe (my pooter sings)' is an odd affair and reminds me very much of mouse on mars with its analogue squeaks and bubbles. 'people' rocks like no other! bowel-quaking sub-bass, rolling pianos, snatches of strings, ethnic percussion, feedback/distortion,drill'n bass, ambience. In that order.
possible pop-hit 'lagoon' is a wonderful laid-back guitar groove jam which could go on for ever. 'song for belgium' is an exercise in breakbeats, the lounge style jazz riffs offset from the relentless rhythm. And then it gets even harder with the beats (and everything else for that matter) being distorted to fuck. 'jump off the box' would be the sound sonic youth would make if they discovered drum'n bass. title track has an indian film on a loop while all sorts of weird and strange sampled noises go off and do their own thing. sounds like complete chaos but i'm sure it makes complete sense to them.
'cosmonaut' is a trippy spaced out affair in the best tradition of spiritualized and spacemen 3. all that's gone on before comes to a head here with the guitars, electronic drums, wind chimes, steel drums and whispered vocals thrown into the mix. the breadth of instruments used here and the styles of musics coming through are the produce of more than one country.
make no mistake, this is a stunning debut and much kudos should go to mike 'µ-ziq' paradinas who snapped them up for his planet µ label. the empire never sounded better.
- Various - The Cosmic Forces Of Mu
- Venetian Snares - Defluxion
- Venetian Snares & Speedranch - Making Orange Things
- Joseph Nothing - Dummy Variations
- Hrvatski - Swarm & Dither
- Mu Allstars - Criminal
- Hellfish & Producer - Constant Mutation (Mixed)
- Leafcutter John - Microcontact
- Nicole Elmer - Beef Bouilion
- Tim Tetlow - Beauty Walks A Razor's Edge
- Phthalocyanine - 25 Tracks Fer 1 Track
- Leafcutter John - Concourse E.E.P.
- Luke Vibert - '95-'99
- Jega - Geometry
- Capitol K - Roadeater E.P.
- Kid Spatula - Full Sunken Breaks
- Jega & Kid Spatula - Unity Gain / Hard Love
- Capitol K - Sounds Of The Empire
- Slag Boom Van Loon - So Soon
- Tusken Raiders - The Motorbike Track
- Slag Boom Van Loon - Slag Boom Van Loon
- Jega - Spectrum
- Horse Opera - 3 Cornered Room
- Capitol K - Island Row