Excitement is brewing around the club before the doors open as fans eagerly await the return of British ska punk veterans (their words not mine) Capdown. The average age of punters is noticeably higher than your regular punk show audience, though perhaps this isn’t surprising considering it’s been the best part of a decade since the peak of the band’s popularity.
First up however, are Vanilla Pod, who are faced with the unenviable task of playing to about 30 people as they go on almost the moment doors open. A mistake on their part leads to them getting around 15 minutes to work with, but to be fair to them, they put in a decent enough effort and it’s a shame they don’t have longer to impress.
Next on the bill are ska metallers and Reading and Leeds regulars Random Hand, who seem to have brought a fair amount of their own fans along because the floor is quickly filled with people moving along to their infectious, high energy sound. The band are quick out of the blocks and fly straight into “Tales Of Intervention”, the opening track from their latest album Seething Is Believing, quickly followed by two other favourites from the same album, “Three From Six” and single “Bones”.
The set continues as brilliantly as it began and come the end, Capdown will be lucky if anybody has kept anything in reserve for them. Random Hand are a band that many were disappointed not to see on this year’s Reading and Leeds line ups, but on this performance don’t be surprised to see them back soon enough. They are making a major name for themselves and without doubt they will continue to claim higher slots in the Lock Up as they go from strength to strength.
Rating – [4.0/5.0]
Once their recovery is complete, fans pack the floor for the arrival of Capdown, who appear to huge roars from the expectant crowd, most of which are about to spend the next hour of their life bouncing and dancing like a maniac – if the crowd is half as energetic at Reading and Leeds, the tent will be a sight to behold.
After the first few songs and general introductions are over, front man Jake Sims-Fielding spots a youngster in the front row, the band seem genuinely shocked to learn he was born in 1995, which according to them is about when they did their GCSE’s (way to make them feel older than they already do, kid). Nevertheless, they also look flattered that their music is not only popular amongst ageing punks these days.
They also demand that the older generation in attendance show everyone how it was done in 2000, as they kick into the ever popular “Cousin Cleotis” from their debut album Civil Disobedients. It must be said, the crowd doesn’t disappoint, the ensuing pandemonium ensures that “Cousin Cleotis” is the highlight of a great night, though it’s certainly run close by set closer “Ska Wars”.
Throughout the show, there is never a dull moment, as you’d expect from a band with a reputation for being a phenomenal live act. Nobody goes home disappointed from a Capdown show. It’s certainly not too much to say that they are among the best in the world at what they do.
Rating – [4.5/5.0]
Capdown really are unmissable at the festival’s this year, on performance alone. However, if you needed any more convincing, it seems apparent that the band see this reunion as very much temporary, Reading and Leeds could well be your last ever chance to catch them live. Grasp the opportunity with both hands or else you will regret it.