Thursday, 6 October 2011

The Fall And Rise Of The Capstan Shafts' Kind Empire

Dean Wells sent me an email about a month ago, one I neglected to do anything about until about four days previously. I was rooting around the emails, trying to do some serious culling of old messages, when I stumbled over it. I wondered why Id left it behind. When I opened it up, all it had was a Bandcamp link to a band called The Capstan Shafts - no other kind of conversational devices or salutations at all. Now usually I toss these - there are too many things going on than just having something thrown at me without the decency of even the smallest amount of info - but I was itchy with procrastination, so I gave it a shot.

Kind Empires has a killer opener in 'Degenerate Era Sweetheaert', and it goes from there. Wells has a voice not far removed from revered Aussie troubadour Paul Kelly, if he was doing Guided By Voices and Thermals covers. It doesn't always work, but Kind Empires is a worthy listen just for the opening track, and there are other songs of its calibre littered throughout. Furthermore, it seems Wells is rather prolific, with a vast array of releases under his belt - I think that by fishing through the back catalogue you could muster up a pretty decent retrospective of an artist that is unfortunately flying too far under the radar.

Capstan Shafts - Degenerate Era Sweetheart
Capstan Shafts - Like Theme From "Arthouse Floozy"

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