Jul 112010

Into the Moat is (or maybe was) a head-spinning metal band from South Florida. They released their second album, The Campaign, in the spring of 2009, and we thought it was one of the most riveting tech-death albums of the year.

Into the Moat had its genesis almost a decade ago as a one-man project started by a dude named Matthew Gossman, and as that project evolved into a full-fledged band, he remained the drummer and a key creative force in the band’s music.

A couple weeks ago we saw a news item reporting that Gossman had joined another South Florida band called Capsule, and around the same time Gossman published a video blog that disclosed a few other details (at this location) — such as the fact that he recently graduated from college with a bachelor’s degree in business administration and that other guys in Into the Moat are also in school, which explains why the band has been dormant, with no news for almost a year.

Because we’re such big fans of Into the Moat, we decided to check out Capsule’s music, just to see what attracted Gossman (apart from the fact that the other dudes in the band are old friends). And when we did that, we had one of those “holy shit!” moments — you know, the kind that make us start gurgling out one of these posts.  (more after the jump . . .)

Capsule has one album to its credit, plus a previous demo. The album was released in 2008 by Robotic Empire, it’s got a cool cover, and it’s called Blue. It’s available for download at iTunes and Amazon.

When Blue was recorded, Capsule was a 3-piece band, but even with that kind of stripped-down instrumentation, these dudes made a helluva lot of noise.

The early songs on Blue are mainly short, brutally heavy assaults on the senses, combining dense bass-drum rhythms, Converge-style hardcore yelling, mathcore tempo shifts, and freaked-out guitar blasts and squeals.

Capsule basically knocks down your door, slaps you in the face, kicks you in the ass for good measure, and then runs back outside before you’re fully aware of what just happened.

Then you hit the album’s mid-point and run smack into an instrumental song called “Determinal”, which is a marked exception to the beat-your-ass-and-run pacing. It’s over 8 minutes long and it’s a a slow, sludgy, doomy piece of demented experimental noise. It’s ominous, claustrophobic, and hypnotic.

Capsule follows “Determinal” with “Blue/Green”, another slow instrumental (but sans drums), more dreamily beautiful than “Determinal”, but in its own way just as spooky.

After that trance-inducing, instrumental middle section, Blue closes out with a mix of songs that include both a return to the home-invasion pacing with which the album began and more prog-metal shoe-gaze, and sometimes both within the same song (as on “Flowerpower”).

Blue is definitely over on the prog/experimental end of the metal spectrum, with lots of spastic guitar and complex bass and drum patterns, but it’s a brutal kick-in-the-head experience that we thought was pretty fucking cool.

Capsule also has a new song up on its MySpace page (here) called “Whole Grounds”. It’s the song that brought us up short when we first started exploring Capsule’s music. It’s ridiculously heavy, with a slow, crushing rhythm, cacophonous guitar noise penetrating the weighty low end, and hardcore yells clamoring for attention.

We swapped e-mail’s with Capsule’s Ryan Haft, and he tells us that “Whole Grounds” will be appearing on a new full-length album that the band has finished recording. So far, Capsule hasn’t hooked up with a label to release it, but if the rest of the new songs are as sick as “Whole Grounds”, we can’t imagine it will take long to find a willing distributor.

Go check out “Whole Grounds” at the band’s MySpace, but while you’re here, listen to this track from Blue:

Capsule: Cobalt Connection


Capsule has been touring here in the U.S., and the following dates remain before the band leaves to begin a European tour in September:

Jul 11 2010 8:00P
@ St.Bernards
Bethlehem, PA

Jul 12 2010 8:00P
@ 412 Cedar House
Greensboro, NC

Jul 13 2010 8:00P
@ the Hangar
Greenville, SC

Jul 14 2010 8:30P
@ Shantytown w/ RAUH
Jacksonville, FL

Aug 13 2010 8:00P
@the Atlantic w/ MehkagoNT
Gainesville, FL

Aug 16 2010 8:00P
@ New Brooklyn Tavern w/ MehkagoNT
Columbia, SC

Aug 20 2010 8:30P
@ 201212 w/ MehkagoNT, Young and In the Way
Charlotte, NC

The band’s MySpace page has more tour info, including the dates and places in Europe for the September-October tour.

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