If this band sounds unfamiliar, that’s because even though they’ve been around for a while now, they’ve only been in this incarnation for a relatively recent amount of time. Rather, Capture were once Capture The Crown, the sort of horrendously shoddy and derivative metalcore band falling into the same camp of blind, tactless provocation as Attila with even less to justify it. That ultimately came to an end in 2017 when they underwent a rebranding, apparently to avoid the negativity of the metalcore scene (which seems a bit rich considering some of the lyrics on their breakout track You Call That A Knife? This Is A Knife! but whatever), though up to now, it’s not done much for them. They were never a wealth of presence within the scene as Capture The Crown, but lifting themselves even further out of the conversation now feels incredibly counterproductive, especially in the polished, produced brand of metalcore that’s already gasping for air as it is. But somehow, Capture have got a new album ready to go in Lost Control which apparently has a lot riding on it in thanks to a level of ambition and belief of greatness that – let’s face it – these sorts of bands can never follow through with.
And lo and behold, here’s another classic example of metalcore ankle-biters being totally unable to deliver what they aim for. To be fair, Lost Control is at least a step up for not being as utterly wretched as the band’s previous incarnation, but face-numbingly boring is hardly a preferable alternative, and with all the production bells and whistles that feel more and more redundant over time, there’s simply nothing here that stands out. This sort of metalcore is already critically past its use-by date, but when Capture don’t even attempt to put any unique spin on a sound that’s been hammered into the ground, it’s worth wondering what the point in even trying was.
At least it lessens the need for much deeper analysis, mostly because almost every element of Capture’s mere existence can be traced back to some other band who most likely copied it themselves. The production is perhaps where the derivation hits the hardest, throwing back to the early-to-mid-2010s approach of keeping everything as spotless and colourless as possible to drain any colour or vibrancy – or even heft – from the mix. It’s definitely noticeable as well; for as boring as the first handful of tracks are, they’re at least designed around this production technique, but when Social Suicide goes for a nu-metal guitar groove, having it this rounded and compressed takes away any enjoyability. It’s not like there’s anything all that engaging for Capture to say beyond the melodic metalcore playbook that’s already been rinsed to the point of destruction, but it’s not like they can stand out in really any regard. Jeffrey Welfare doesn’t a bad voice, but it’s so painfully nondescript that the only times it really connects come in the fleeting dips into his natural Australian accent.
Beyond that, it would be unfair to suggest that there’s nothing here, though most of the time it does feel as though it comes around by pure coincidence. The guest rap from P.O.D.’s Sonny Sandoval on High is all too short, but it’s the purest moment of inspiration across the album that was crafted to be as such. As for the poppy slink of Cruise or the pop-punk influences on This One’s For You, they’re welcome breaks from the profound monotony, but given how little they gel with the big picture, they’re the most obvious outliers when it comes to Capture’s vision. There’s nothing necessarily wrong with that, but when they feel almost incidentally struck upon amidst the blank-faced metalcore void, it’s hard to imagine these elements really being built upon in future.
Then again, to presume that Capture will have a future after this is bold indeed, especially when this brand of metalcore is effectively extinct within the wider scene, and Lost Control doesn’t seem to be the album to lead its grand resurrection. It’s actually quite the opposite; this conflates everything so boring and vapid about this brand of metalcore for the most convincing evidence in some time of why it should be avoided at all costs. There have been worse albums in this vein, but few in recent memory that have felt this unnecessary, and while that’s undeniably a step up for Capture given what they were once responsible for, again, it’s not going to fly. For anyone actually seeking this sort of thing out, it’s not like there weren’t far better albums to come out of its heyday that can be explored instead of this.
For fans of: Asking Alexandria, blessthefall, The Word Alive
Words by Luke Nuttall
‘Lost Control’ by Capture is out now on Artery Records.