WRITTEN BY ZOY BRITTON
FEBRUARY 13, 2014 via PEPSI
American indie pop duo, Capital
Cities could best be described as an experimental New Wave, synth-based,
electropop band. If that description isn’t so clear, take a listen
to the first track and single “Safe and Sound” off their
debut studio album In A Tidal Wave of Mystery and all will be made clear.
The band, who is currently on their Bright Futures tour with Fitz and
the Tantrums, consists of 35-year-old Sebu Simonian and 32-year-old
Ryan Merchant, though they typically use full bands for their high-energy
The pair met via Craigslist and were able to easily establish a musical
rhythm and capitalize on their immediate chemistry despite such unorthodox
beginnings. Originally, the two formed a company that created TV jingles,
an occupation which acted as a wonderful incubator in birthing Capital
Cities. Sebu elaborates, “Throughout that process we kind of grew
as producers because in that world you have to write in a wide variety
of genres with a fast turnaround time and we definitely applied that
knowledge to our songwriting for the band.” The duo’s ability
to incorporate medley genres into cohesive tracks shines throughout
their album especially in the sound-bit ridden track “Farrah Fawcett
Hair” that also features Andre 3000.
“The song came from our desire to do something experimental…and
started out with this idea of writing a song that pays tribute to the
best things in life,” Simsonian says of the process. Some of the
items on the guys’ “undeniably awesome” list included
Farrah Fawcett’s hair, NPR’s famed commentator Soterios
Johnson and the musically talented Andre 3000. “A lot of our ideas
were coming through and so our manager reached out to Andre 3000's manager
and to our surprise he agreed to do a verse on the song.”
Simonian and Merchant are all about artistic experimentation and quirk.
“Kangaroo Court,” the track for their latest visuals is
a great example of the way they balance intelligence and silliness.
“A huge part of our theme is to show the dark and the bright side
of life…in “Kangaroo Court” the lyrics discuss these
dire situations and yet there’s this sense of optimism and desire
to dance your way out of it,” explains Simonian. Although, “Kangaroo
Court” might seem like a bunch of weirdos dressed like animals
at first glance, you can also look at it as a piece of social commentary.
Check out the video and let us know what you think Capital Cities is
trying to say in their funky video for “Kangaroo Court”
(Tip: Look up the meaning of kangaroo court in the dictionary).