• Capitol K - Island Row

    Reviewed by I.M. (playlouder.com)

    <b> Capitol K </b> - Island Row

    Not likely to be getting nominated for the Brits any time soon, this one. Not only has Kristian Craig Robinson -- for Capitol K is he -- travelled to the point where national identity becomes a slightly ambiguous issue, but 'Island Row' clings to music's fringe like a particularly tenacious head louse while still managing to sound less distressed than the new Billie Piper album. No mean feat.
    Mind you, his releases from the last couple of years should have suggested there was no territory he wasn't prepared to chart, but this latest offering makes its predecessor 'Sounds Of The Empire' sound like a busking Stereophonics fan, in spite of the fact that Robinson seems increasingly comfortable with the tools of genuinely popular pop. Avant blasphemy it may be, but he's recorded not just vaguely proper songs ('Lion Anon', for instance) but also a Prince song ('Dance On'). And there's a two-step track of sorts here too ('Capitol Beat Sticky')! There is, however, also an abundance of mid-tune reversing, ethnic cross-referencing, fiddly stereo scrambling, and enough glitches on the first track alone to leave the listener well and truly juddered. Nothing for Craig David really to worry about, then, although we suspect he'd have to spend more than one day chillin' after listening to it.
    Of course, while Capitol K's commercial credentials are still lacking, he is coming across more than ever as a cousin of Cornelius, who, we're told, is a Boyzone-scale pop star in Japan, so who knows what he could yet go on to. Meanwhile, 'Island Row' is quite achievement enough. Play next to this year's Jimi Tenor and Jamie Lidell albums and watch your brain slither off for cover.

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