Captain of Industry
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Captain of Industry

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Jul
18
Captain of Industry @ RiverScape MetroPark

Dayton, Ohio, USA

Dayton, Ohio, USA

Jul
06
Captain of Industry @ Trash Bar

New York City, New York, USA

New York City, New York, USA

Jul
05
Captain of Industry @ Pianos

New York City, New York, USA

New York City, New York, USA

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Music

Press


I’m going to give it to you straight: file the following information away somewhere safe, because, so far, it’s all you’re going to find out about the elusive Dayton, OH band known as Captain of Industry. The band consists of Nathan Peters on keyboards/vocals, John Lakes on drums/background vocals, Kevin Oldfield on guitar and Joseph Remnant on bass. Follow along closely, you’re in for a strange treat.

Their web site is vague when it comes to finding out information on the band, but with this mystique comes a creative edge that is often missing from many bands in general, and, as you’ll learn, this enigmatic quality serves to add more character, rather than less, to their disc. The Great Divide has an aura of drug-induced paranoia filtered through well-cut beats, eerie lyrics and at times, Beatles White Album-esque offbeat background harmonies. The CD commands your attention through its hazy ambiguity.

The song which best captures the strange, sinister essence of the disc is “Penguins”. Who knows what this song is about - I don’t - but I think it might be associated somehow with the sad state of our governmental affairs, or what it’s like to be a human being living in this day and age. The intro immediately grabs you with the simple strokes of Peters’ keyboard, and Oldfield’s sitar-like guitar adds to the menacing feeling. The paranoia immediately sets in with lyrics like, “The killer’s on the inside, staring at the T.V./Bang a little louder so I can watch and see/There’s got to be an answer hiding in the closet/Bang a little louder/Maybe they’ll hear, maybe they won’t.” Need I say more? You get the idea - the song makes the hair on my arms stand up. They have mastered the ability to create suspense and delusional psychosis through music.

Not only do Captain of Industry exhibit a strong ability to create a mood or a force behind a song, they also have distinct opinions on a issues that our society is facing in the world today (such as in “Spaceman”, the second song). Their intelligence and sensitivity runs through, and beyond, their sound.

Even the cover artwork defines the intended mood very well. The band has their own artist, Ben Blumensheid, who designs their CDs, web site and show posters. Blumensheid’s contributions are unique, because few other bands can boast of an actual comic strip (on the site) depicting the band members in dark, yet vibrant, panels.

Captain Of Industry catch you and won’t let you go until their message is made clear, even if their personal details are murky - they put the songs first, not themselves. They are one of the most unique and entertaining bands around, and I find them deserving of attention for the simple fact that they aren’t singing about crap. That’s rare these days.

Author: Danielle Pfarr - i-see-sound.com


Captain of Industry is truly a band out of time. The scruffy prog-pop outfit has the lineup of an '80s new-wave band — Nathan Peters (keyboards, vocals), Kevin Oldfield (guitar), John Lakes (drums) and Joseph Remnant — but the modern musical inquisitiveness to explore a wide range of musical styles.

Captain of Industry, which performs tonight at the Attic in Kettering, creates a heady melodic stew comprised of chaotic '90s indie rock, jittery post-punk, restrained psychedelic touches, discordant noise rock, '60s British invasion pop and the expansive arrangements of early '70s progressive rock. The Dayton-based quartet manages to meld these diverse influences into a focused, inviting sound.

Since bursting onto the local scene in 2002, Captain of Industry has been creating pop music with brains and an adventurous spirit. These guys are dedicated to serving the mighty hooks, but they are thankfully unwilling to settle for the obvious.

The group's latest CD, The Great Divide, is the skewed pop rockers' second full-length and its most realized album, offering an amalgam of melodic smarts, indie work ethos and art-damaged introspection. The quartet has expanded its aural palate without sacrificing the great contrast between its melodic base and its edgy, experimental tendencies.

On the title track, the quartet alternates between hypnotic ballad verses and bright, melodic choruses before segueing into a tripped-out ending. Girl is a bouncy, piano-driven pop song married to a jazzy, space-rock rhythm track. The group melds Brit-pop and '90s math rock in the engaging Quiet Zone, and Bugg sounds like Blur jamming with Six Finger Satellite.

The Great Divide was released in late October by Dayton-based Do Tell Records, which has also released CDs by Skeleton Key, the Story Changes and Enon. Captain of Industry celebrated the release of the new disc by embarking on a three-week autumn tour of the south, opening for label mates the Slackers.

The 15-date road stint ended with a sold-out show at Pearl with Captain of Industry and the Slackers on Nov. 15.

The group is now performing sporadically throughout the region while making plans to tour Europe later in the year.

Tonight Captain of Industry performs at the Attic, 2852 Wilmington Pike, with openers Bonneville, Aviation Over Moscow and the Great State. The show is for all ages. Admission is $10, and doors open at 8 p.m. For more details, call 297-9634 or visit www.theatticclub.com.

Rock Insider, by freelance arts and music writer Don Thrasher, appears weekly and gives a behind-the-scenes view of the Dayton music scene. Contact Thrasher by e-mail at donaldthrasher8@aol.com. - Dayton Daily News


As an elite member of the criterati, I am entitled to rights and privileges that ordinary male members of the music-loving public do not receive. One of these privileges (in addition to the endless parade of groupies, the expensive foodstuffs that never stop coming, and bitter hatemail from Alex Caldiero fans) is that I receive a lot of free or greatly discounted music. The Great Divide by Captain of Industry was one of those dividends. I'd like to say that I received it because the band valued my critique more than they valued the money they lost, but I think it was due mostly to the fact that I only brought two dollars with me to the show. Thanks for the discount, guys.

Anyway, I tell this whole, narcissist story to recount what John Lakes, drummer for the band, told me when I asked him what The Great Divide sounded like. “Oh, it's all over the place. If you like The Beatles, The Police, The Kinks, there will be something on it you'll like.” And it's not false advertising. Captain of Industry doessound remarkably like all those bands and more, often within the same song.

The Great Divide opens with 'Greater Than Greater Than,' and might seem odd initially that its also the album's longest track. However, after hearing the rest of the songs, it makes more sense since 'Greater Than Greater Than' makes a nice summation of the band's different modes, letting you know if you'll enjoy The Great Divide in five minutes instead of forty. Starting off sounding like Bloc Party covering the Beatles using Julian Casablanca's vocal filter, it moves into a chorus of “Move on / Just move on” replete with swooning Beach Boys harmonies, and then there's an oddly timed instrumental breakdown, and then we move into Police territory, with minimal textural guitarwork, lots of high-hat, and a bouncy bassline. 'Hollywood Square' is the best song the Kinks never wrote. If you can't imagine Ray Davies singing “I'm your Hollywood square,” maybe you need to break out Lola. The noisy, chaotic 'Quiet Zone' has enough unsettling licks to keep you up for weeks, and a beautiful chorus custom built to sit uncomfortably next to them.

If I make The Great Divide sound derivative, it's not intentional. In fact, the whole album shines with positively Tarantinian homage, taking hundreds snippets and bits and stitching them together into a unique whole that pays tribute to the band's influences while forging a new sound. To go through the album song by song would be time consuming (and probably pretty boring for you, intrepid reader), but between the Bacharachian retro rock of 'Girl,' the dark, post-punk politicizing of 'Where'd the Money Go,' 'Penguins,' and 'Spaceman,' and Queen-indebted, shoulda-been-a-single 'Bugg,' John's claims are more than substantiated. Admittedly, not everything works, and Captain of Industry isn't as immediate as many of the copious retro-poppelgangers currently clogging the racks of your local record shop, but their songs are layered and full of ideas. Anyone looking for more than a disposable chorus and some ironic detachment will find something to love here at The Great Divide.

7.3

Brent Waggoner - www.firesideometer.com


* In an age of synthetic dance music and generic hard rock, the four members of Captain of Industry have crafted a memorable collection of skewed pop songs.

The group's excellent self-titled debut album on Team Evil Records manages to sound fresh and new while harkening back to such classic post-punk acts as the Smiths, U2 and XTC, with dashes of King Crimson, Don Caballero and Radiohead tossed in for good measure. Captain of Industry - Nathan Peters (vocalist/keyboardist), Kevin Oldfield (guitar), Ian Sperry (bass) and John Lakes (drums) - has officially been playing live less than a year, but the four members are longtime friends and the camaraderie is apparent in the diverse and dynamic music, which evolved during a series of informal jam sessions.

"It wasn't even supposed to be a new project," said Lakes, sitting with bandmates Peters and Sperry in the "lounge" area of Team Evil's subterranean headquarters and recording studio.

"We were just messing around, and it kind of happened. A lot of it was pretty free-form. We actually played together for about a year before we even played a show."

When the group made its live debut in January, the guys only had a few songs completed.

"When we first started playing, I only had lyrics written for two songs so I made up different words our first three shows," Peters admits.

"Losing my car was a big motivator for me. I was riding the bus and just tweaking over stuff, and I started writing a lot of lyrics."

The quartet quickly got serious, and in March, just a few months after the live debut, COI began recording with Noel Benford of Team Evil Records and Chris Common at Danger Room Studios.

"The nice aspect of spending all that time jamming is that we were closer to being ready to do an album when we started playing out than a lot of bands, certainly ones I've been in," Lakes said.

"Another key thing was we recorded at Chris' studio, but we mixed here so we had time to spend on it. Anything that is well-produced or well-put together can be credited to Noel. He spent countless hours down here putting in that extra bit of effort to make sure things were correct."

The hard work paid off. Captain of Industry has crafted the best debut rock album to come out of Dayton in years, and it's one of my favorite 2003 releases in any genre. I can't wait to hear what these guys come up with in a year or two when the four musicians really start to gel.

Rock Insider, by free-lance arts and music writer Don Thrasher, gives a behind-the-scenes view of the Dayton music scene. It appears every other week. Contact Thrasher by e-mail at donaldthrasher8@aol.com.

- Dayton Daily News


For a town its size, Dayton, Ohio is home to an inordinately large number of rock bands, particularly of the punk rock and indie rock variety. The thing is the city also seems to have some mysterious high-suction undertow that invariably prevents most of the area's homegrown talent from traveling more than a few hours away from his or her favorite neighborhood tavern.

For every Guided By Voices, Shesus, Swearing at Motorists, Lab Partners or The Story Changes that manages to carve out a modest slice of national/international popularity, there are literally dozens of talented bands that for one reason or another never achieve anything above local popularity.

”Dayton can be a black hole. It’s a comfort zone is all it is,” said Nathan Peters of Captain of Industry. The keyboardist and vocalist for the Dayton-based band is sitting with band mates John Lakes (drums) and Ian Sperry (bass) in the cluttered “lounge” area of Team Evil Records' subterranean headquarters and recording studio beneath BHA Piano Center. Guitarist Kevin Oldfield is absent due to work obligations.

”At the same time, it’s really neat to be in a town like Dayton,” Lakes said. “With all its faults and flaws, there is a great pool of talent and there are a lot of people who have inspired us. I know we’ve all been influenced by so many good Dayton bands.”

If there has been any new Dayton act in the past five years that has the potential to break free of the black hole, it’s this adventurous prog-pop band. Although Captain of Industry has only been officially playing live 11 months, Nathan Peters (vocals/keyboards), Kevin Oldfield (guitar), Ian Sperry (bass) and John Lakes (drums) are longtime friends and the camaraderie is apparent in the diverse and dynamic music, which evolved during a series of informal jam sessions originally staged as a diversion from their other various bands.

“It wasn’t even supposed to be a new project,” Lakes said. “We were just messing around and it kind of happened. A lot of it was pretty free form. We actually played together for about a year before we even played a show.”

”It’s never been an issue where anybody wanted to rush anything,” Peters added. “We wanted to keep getting better and improving on the songs we have. We’re always moving forward.”

"For a long time, Nathan was still playing with Vinyl Dies and they were still doing shows,” Lakes continued. “We would get together a lot of times and just jam and a lot of ideas were created there that would later become songs. It really was later, when we all started getting serious and decided we were going to get a name and start playing shows that the song structures, lyrics and titles started coming together.”

Although the group was becoming more serious and focused, there was still a free form element involved when Captain of Industry made its live debut in January 2003. At that point, the quartet still only had a few songs completely written and arranged, but that didn’t prevent them from taking their music to the people.

”When we first started playing I only had lyrics written for two songs, so I made up different words every time for our first three shows,” Peters admits. “Losing my car was a big motivator for me. I was riding the bus and just tweaking over stuff and I started writing a lot of lyrics.”

Pleased with the initial response and the direction of the new material, Peters, Oldfield, Sperry and Lakes quickly buckled down and began fine-tuning the songs. In March, just a few months after their live debut, the members of COI entered Danger Room Studios in Dayton with engineer Chris Common and Team Evil labelmeister Noel Benford, who co-produced the material with the band.

With the able assistance of Benford and Common, the four members of Captain of Industry were able to craft the compelling collection of songs that became the group's excellent new self-titled Team Evil debut. The 11-song disc manages to sound fresh and new while harkening back to such classic post-punk acts as The Smiths, U2, REM and XTC, with dashes of King Crimson, Don Caballero and Radiohead tossed in for good measure.

”The nice aspect of spending all that time jamming is that we were closer to being ready to do an album when we started playing out than a lot of bands, certainly ones I’ve been in,” Lakes said. “Another key thing was we recorded at Chris’ studio but we mixed here so we had time to spend on it. Anything that is well produced or well put together can be credited to Noel because he spent countless hours down here putting in that extra bit of effort to make sure things were correct.”

The hard work definitely paid off. The modern pop-rock songs are bursting with memorable melodic hooks, clever rhythmic shifts, tasteful arrangements and Oldfield's arsenal of guitar tones and effects pedals.

”John and I have pop minds,” Nathan said, explaining the focus on tight melodies. “I like the pop format, not necessarily modern p - Sponic Zine (http://www.sponic.com)


For reviews of our music from listeners all over the world, please visit http://www.garageband.com/artist/coi - Garageband.com


Discography

Releases:

UPCOMING NEW RELEASE - Spring 2008
- Brand new, full-length album from COI

'The Gold Teeth EP' - 2007, Self-Released

'The Great Divide' - 2005, Do Tell Records

'Captain of Industry EP' - 2005, Self-Released

'!' - 2004 Re-release, Bettawreckonize Media
'!' - 2003 Original self-release pressing

WWSU-106.9FM Compilation CD featuring Captain of
Industry and Guided By Voices

'!' - 2003 Original release, Team Evil Records

Radio:

'Good Side Son', 'Under My Belt', and 'It Might Be Me' (all from the debut release '!'), and 'Quiet Zone', 'Hollywood Squares', and 'Go Go's' (from 'The Great Divide' released 2005) are in regular play on stations across the country including KAPU - Azusa CA, KWRF - Santa Monica CA, KXLU - Los Angeles CA, KCUR - Kansas City MO, KWUR - St. Louis MO, WIIT - Chicago IL, WNAZ - Rochester NY, WDCE - Richmond VA, KASC - Tempe AZ, and many other stations nationwide.

Captain is also featured on many internet radio stations and distribution sites. Radio promotion by Team Clermont. Online sales via Interpunk, CD Universe, Amazon.com, iTunes, the Orchard, Rhapsody/Real Music, Napster, Myspace/SNOCAP, Tower Records, and many others.

Photos

Bio

Captain of Industry are an experimental rock/pop band from Dayton, Ohio, made up of Nathan Peters on keyboards, guitar and vocals; John Lakes on percussion and vocals; Kevin Oldfield on guitar, percussion and electronics; Ian Sperry on bass and vocals; and Tommy Cooper on guitar. Captain of Industry began within a decrepit house in a rough part of East Dayton - though the space was limited, rent was cheap and the neighbors were too stoned to mind the noise. To escape the endless grind working a coffeeshop, a kitchen, a shop floor... one bedroom became a rehearsal space/recording studio, and a year of experimentation and writing between friends culminated with the self-released debut, "!", in Summer 2003. Local response to the album was excellent: In a small town with an uncharacteristically high pedigree (Guided By Voices, Brainiac, the Breeders, and Lab Partners all hail from the Gem City), music critic Don Thrasher put it this way - "Captain of Industry has crafted the best debut rock album to come out of Dayton in years, and it's one of my favorite 2003 releases in any genre." After "!" was re-released in 2004 by start-up label Bettawreckonize media, 2005 saw the bands first national release, "The Great Divide". Released by Do Tell Records and supported with two national tours spanning California to Canada to the recently Katrina-soaked Gulf-coast, the band garnered much attention from bloggers and the music underground. Firesideometer.com noted in Fall 2006 that "…[The Great Divide] shines with positively Tarantinian homage, taking hundreds snippets and bits and stitching them together into a unique whole that pays tribute to the band's influences while forging a new sound." Many have speculated on the inspiration for the band's name - is it a reference to Jets to Brazil's Sweet Avenue ('I'm a captain of industry smoking famously'); or is it taken from the Upton Sinclair classic of the same name? Certainly the band draws inspiration from both, as it continues to navigate the waters of experimental pop-rock with the release of a new EP in May 2008 and the completion of their third full-length album in September 2008.

Captain of Industry has performed with

Limbeck (Doghouse), the Long Winters (Barsuk), Menomena (Barsuk), Stellastarr* (RCA), Annie (Big Beat), Mates of State (Polyvinyl), Apollo Up! (Theory 8), Denovo Dahl (Roadrunner), Forget Cassettes, The Big Sleep, What Made Milwaukee Famous (Barsuk), Kevin Devine and the Goddamn Band, Joan of Arc (Polyvinyl), Cabin, Headlights (Polyvinyl), Page France, The Sunshine, Dracula Zombie USA (Serious Business), The Joggers (Star-time), Bullet Train to Vegas, Pistolita, Toots and the Maytals (2004 Grammy Award winner), Enon (Touch & Go), The Slackers (Hellcat/Epitaph), Ambulette (ex. Denali), Oh My God!, Melee (Warner Bros.), Maritime (DeSoto), The Life and Times (DeSoto), Love As Laughter (Sub-Pop), Swearing at Motorists (Secretly Canadian), The Detachment Kit (Spinart), Make Believe (Flameshovel/Polyvinyl), Skeleton Key (Ipecac/Do Tell), The Natural History (Star Time), Amusement Parks On Fire (Invada), The Forty-Fives (Yep-Roc), The Eyeliners (Lookout), Los Skarnales (Megalith), The Blood-Thirsty Lovers (ex. Guided By Voices), The High Strung (Tee Pee), Mouth of the Architect, Happy Chichester (Howlin’ Maggie, Twilight Singers), Colossal (Asian Man), The Giraffes, Bishop Allen, The Forms, Moth, Cadillac Blindside, Cry Baby Cry, The Carlsonics, The Story Changes, The Cinema Eye, Blood On The Wall, Lab Partners, Tom Pappas (Superdrag).

Captain of Industry has performed at

The Desdemona Festival, Midwest Music Summit Featured Act, The Hook (Brooklyn, NY), Subterranean (Chicago, IL), University of Wisconsin, University of Dayton, Sin-é (NYC), Kent State University, Ohio University, The Troubadour (Hollywood, CA), The Knitting Factory Main Stage (NYC), Slim's (San Francisco, CA), SLO Brew (San Luis Obispo, CA), the Bottom Lounge (Chicago, IL), El Corazón (Seattle, WA), The Glass House (Pomona, CA), Southgate House (Cincinnati, OH), The Viper Room (Cincinnati, OH), WOXY.com Lounge (Cincinnati, OH), Midpoint Music Festival Featured Act (Cincinnati, OH), The Clubhouse (Phoenix, AZ), The Blind Pig (Ann Arbor, MI), Sugar Lounge (Victoria, B.C., Canada), W.I.S.E. Hall (Vancouver, B.C., Canada), The Velvet Room (Salt Lake City, UT), The Ottobar (Baltimore, MD), The Nanci Raygun (Richmond, VA), The Earl (Atlanta, GA), The Social (Orlando, FL), Common Grounds (Gainesville, FL), Churchill's (Miami, FL), The Orpheum (Tampa, FL), Engine Room (Houston, TX), The Maple Leaf (New Orleans, LA), 31st Street Pub (Pittsburg, PA), The Sanctuary (San Antonio, TX), Flamingo Cantina (Austin, TX), the Trees (Dallas, TX), The End (Nashville, TN), 3rd & Lindsley (Nashville, TN).