"Need A Friend" by The CaprinesReview
One of my very favourite of local bands happens to be Coventry based four piece The Caprines (they comprise Ed Kimberley on drums, Dave Toulson on lead guitar, John Lindley on vocals and on rhythm guitar and Curtis McLellan on bass). Although I have reviewed their captivating live performances, I have not yet done so for a record, so I'm pleased that their release of a new single "Need A Friend" (recorded at Eleven Studios) gives me a chance to put that right.
The band's first release since their eponymous four track EP in 2017, is certainly well worth the wait. It won a place in my heart from the introduction. A beautifully toned bass pulse is prominent in the mix & provides a firm foundation for their trademark brittle if not spiky sound. Reminding me (and other commentators too to be fair) of the angsty post-punk sounds of around 1980, you can imagine hearing this on John Peel's playlist.
Spiky yes, but melodic too. Buzzcocks comparisons are used of the Caprines (I suppose that makes if pretty inevitable that they'd be a band I like so much) are these are fully apposite. I'd also raise Gang of Four hints & the lead guitar chimes in the middle distance of the mix in Joy Division style.
For a band who recorded the Ronettes' "Be My Baby" (you can download it for free from their Bandcamp page) the contrast between that song and this sort of material is quite thrilling: and maybe that sort of juxtaposition is part of their craft, to make us sit up, take notice & engage our brains.
John could certainly play the role of a David Byrne for our scene: my only concern is why are this band not better known than they seem to be? I have asked this of several local musicians and broadcasters & no-one can explain it. I'd like to think that this utterly memorable song might be the breakthrough to wider awareness. It's catchy but not bland. It should appeal to anyone with the wit to devote 3 minutes and 49 seconds of their lives to listen to it & best of all it doesn't sound like anything else in the charts: go on: be discerning as you won't regret it. I think I'll play it again right now.