There’s something a lot of math rock bands forget to do, and that is to write songs that sound like music made by humans. Luckily there is Alright The Captain who manage to create interesting, progressive and heavy tunes that are full of life. Coming at you with plenty of bounce and groove and a load of cheek are the three badgers from the UK who are going about creating a name for themselves both home and through Europe, where people understand this stuff.
With roots in jazz, rock, metal and filthy electronica, their latest EP “Conversational Skills For The Socially Anxious” covers plenty of ground over five tracks in a short space of time without ever feeling anything other than tight and free-flowing. Less erratic than the likes of Xenograft but far more interesting than what bands like TTNG have become, it’s a world of the familiar and the new shoved in a barrel and pushed over Niagara Falls. This is music that asks for and gets your full attention, rather than arrogantly demanding it then, when you screw up your nose, telling you you don’t deserve to understand it.
I’m not even going to try to delve into any of the tracks here because they don’t stay still long enough for me to do them any justice whatsoever, but rest assured this is noisy, whether it be the thumping bass, screeching guitar, sharp snare or glitch and 8-bit up to your eyeballs. This is not your typical math rock of bricks of sound butted end to end and on one another to make a wall, this is one of those dry-stone jobs with interlocking rocks of every size that link in ways that have most of us scratching out heads.
Great production releases the inherent quality of the EP and hints at just how intense and explosive these guys must be live and how much air-drumming and general waving of extremities must occur at their gigs. It’s an EP that takes up where their album “SNIB” from 2011 left off, and if you you like great math rock/metal then this needs to be in your collection. End of story.