Album review: Kap Bambino – ‘Blacklist’

Album review: Kap Bambino - 'Blacklist'


Their shrieky synth shtick will see them boycotted by many

Oh Crystal Castles, were you there in my hour of need? No, you weren’t.

So here I am, praying for doom while lumbered with yet another girl/boy duo playing around with synths and punk (edgy), looking slightly anaemic, getting a bit shouty and in desperate need of a biscuit, or several. Heavens to Betsy, it’s enough to make you feel quite ill of the innards.

To be fair to Kap Bambino’s front-of-house Caroline Martial, she doesn’t actually possess the same rabid-robot fervour of Alice Glass or look like she’d knife you for your dinner money. Nor do Orion Bouvier’s electronic metal mashes resemble Ethan Kath’s sonic Tourette’s.

If anything, there are moments of pop euphoria of bug-eyed Ibiza-raving proportions on Kap Bambino’s third album, such as ‘Red Sign’, ‘Plague’ and ‘Rezozero’, compounded with the same quirk and endless energy that the long-lost Yumi Yumi once revelled in. It’s certainly not the kind of electro sherbert you’d hear on a murkily debauched Crystal Castles offering.

True enough there is the odd moment of raucous burst-your-tonsils-screaming brilliance à la Melt-Banana to be found on ‘Blacklist’, especially on the album’s title track and ‘Human Pills’. Alas, Kap Bambino don’t do themselves any favours by dipping in and out of genres like the musical equivalent of Alzheimer’s; turning up the punk on the Ari Up inspired ‘Batcaves’ and then getting all gabba-gurning in your face on ‘Blond Rose’ seems ill thought out to say the least. But this French duo’s worst crime comes when they deviate from the Crystal Castles school of mayhem and sound like a Cyber Dog-obsessed Ping Pong Bitches (‘Lizards’). And in case you were wondering, that’s just not good.

Ash Dosanjh

More on this artist:
Kap Bambino NME Artist Page
Kap Bambino MySpace