I usually like to plan out when I’m going to be reviewing different albums, but today I felt like just writing something about one of my favorite albums ever. This album is A New Grip with Tired Hands by this small indie rock band hailing from Denton, TX, called The Captive. When they released this album, it wasn’t received with too much fanfare and wasn’t picked up by really any music sites, except for us. This fact is quite a shame because this band is one of the best new artists I’ve heard in years.
From the first song, How Can Anyone Convince Me I’m Not Living In a Graveyard?” to the last song “Eight Ounces of Treason ” The Captive is able to meld all of the guitars into one filled-out blend of raw indie rock. Their musical style is in the same vein as As Cities Burn just a little less polished and produced but I don’t mean that in a bad way. I also wouldn’t say that The Captive is a rip-off of As Cities Burn; ACB is just the closest comparison to what their unique sound is like.
The album is dominated by high-pitched popping guitars courtesy of Ryan Piper and Tyler Collins. No other instrument really stands out on this album. But like I said above most of the time all the instruments blend and become one unstoppable machine of rock n’ roll. Ryan’s vocals are an aquired taste that some people may not like at all. Ryan’s vocals remind me of a blend between My Epic’s Aaron Stone and so long forgotten’s Micah Boyce. These vocals are very distinctive: either you love them or you loathe them.
The lyrics are very deep on A New Grip with Tired Hands and grapple with some very dark and serious themes. These lyrics are definitely not your little kiddy rock lyrics. They are big and beefy in-your-face emo lyrics. On ANGWT The Captive takes on such things as suicide (“Demons”) and dealing with falling short of perfection (“Champion”). So if you’re into this type of lyricism then this is the album for you. If you’re not you might want to listen to some samples of the songs or pass on this one.
There doesn’t seem to be a pluck of a string or a beat of a drum out of place on this album making it a masterpiece. I couldn’t even find a singular problem spot on this album to point out. I think this band and album have the capability of filling a very large hole in the hearts of fans of As Cities Burn. This album would also make a perfect addition to any indie rock fan’s library of music. Plus if you’re just getting into this genre I think it would be a wise choice to start with this album and branch out from there.
5/5 Stars: This EP was my number one EP of 2010. It’s just a real shame that most people will overlook this band because this group is a “needle in a haystack” and a true gem .