PopMatters is moving to WordPress. We will publish a few essays daily while we develop the new site. We hope the beta will be up sometime late next week.

Capsula: Solar Secrets

Long live rock, kids.


Solar Secrets

Label: Krian Music Group
US release date: 2013-08-27
UK release date: Import
Artist web site

Argentinian garage-stoner-freakout outfit Capsula are back with another murky, lo-fi, heavily reverbed offering of guitar-centric rock. The trio don’t stray far from the formula of their previous outing, In the Land of Silver Souls, although this time around there’s a bit less Iggy-esque vocal posturing. Don’t worry, though: There’s plenty of howling guitar, trippy vocals, and tribal percussion on hand to keep fans satisfied. As someone famous once said, if you like this sort of thing, this is the sort of thing you’ll like.

Opening track “Riverside of Love” blends walls of guitar-through-the-meat-grinder rhythms with a pulsating bass line and vocals about, oh, who knows what. It kicks the proceedings off with a bang, though, which is all you can really ask. Follow-up tunes “Constellation Freedom” and “Blind” keep the uptempo good times rolling, the former with a focus on the smoother, female vocals of bassist Coni Duchess and the latter with a punchy thud-thuddy-thud-thuddy-thud rhythm. At their catchiest, Capsula mix a sweet pop-melodic sensibility in with all the murk, and these two songs are fine expressions of that.

The album carries on from there, rarely flagging in energy, if seldom veering far from the established template. “Seven Crimes” is the odd man out here, a midtempo, bluesy number that’s heavy on the bass tones and stretches on for nearly five minutes – and could have been longer. Coming in at number four on the album, it’s placed perfectly to give the listener a little respite from the opening salvo of high-energy tunes. It’s also, arguably, the strongest track on the album, and a strong argument in favor of more such blues-rock explorations, but alas, there are no more to be found.

If there’s a criticism of the record as a whole, it’s this. The back half is consistent with the first, to the point where the listener gets the sense of the band going over familiar territory. There are good tunes here, sure; but there are also a couple of forgettable tracks, the throwaways “The Fear” and “Trails of Senselessness” serving mainly to pad out the album more than anything else.

This is a minor criticism though: Capsula do what they do very well, and had these later tunes come earlier on the album, I might well be comparing them favorably to those that followed after. There are nuggets to be found later on as well, like the crunchy “You Cannot Blame” and the downtempo murk of album closer “Birds of Wood”, which finds the band again utilizing studio effects in service to a fine melody. It’s a satisfying ending to an album that, for the most part, delivers the goods.

Capsula has been releasing records since 1999, and their vision has only gotten stronger as they have gone on. Guitar rock has nothing to fear for its future as long as there are committed bands like this on hand to drag it onward, with one foot in the past and one pointed toward the future.


Please Donate to Help Save PopMatters

PopMatters have been informed by our current technology and hosting provider that we have less than a month, until November 6, to move PopMatters off their service or we will be shut down. We are moving to WordPress and a new host, but we really need your help to save the site.





Peter Guralnick's 'Looking to Get Lost' Is an Ode to the Pleasures of Writing About Music

Peter Guralnick's homage to writing about music, 'Looking to Get Lost', shows how good music writing gets the music into the readers' head.


In Praise of the Artifice in George Cukor's 'Sylvia Scarlett'

George Cukor's gender-bending Sylvia Scarlett proposes a heroine who learns nothing from her cross-gendered ordeal.


The Cure: Ranking the Albums From 13 to 1

Just about every Cure album is worth picking up, and even those ranked lowest boast worthwhile moments. Here are their albums, spanning 29 years, presented from worst to best.


The 20 Best Episodes of 'Star Trek: The Original Series'

This is a timeless list of 20 thrilling Star Trek episodes that delight, excite, and entertain, all the while exploring the deepest aspects of the human condition and questioning our place in the universe.


The 20 Best Tom Petty Songs

With today's release of Tom Petty's Wildflowers & All the Rest (Deluxe Edition), we're revisiting Petty's 20 best songs.

Joshua M. Miller

The 11 Greatest Hits From "Greatest Hits" Compilations

It's one of the strangest pop microcosms in history: singles released exclusively from Greatest Hits compilations. We rounded 'em up and ranked 'em to find out what is truly the greatest Greatest Hit of all.


When Punk Got the Funk

As punks were looking for some potential pathways out of the cul-de-sacs of their limited soundscapes, they saw in funk a way to expand the punk palette without sacrificing either their ethos or idea(l)s.


20 Hits of the '80s You Might Not Have Known Are Covers

There were many hit cover versions in the '80s, some of well-known originals, and some that fans may be surprised are covers.


The Reign of Kindo Discuss Why We're Truly "Better Off Together"

The Reign of Kindo's Joseph Secchiaroli delves deep into their latest single and future plans, as well as how COVID-19 has affected not only the band but America as a whole.


Tommy Siegel's Comic 'I Hope This Helps' Pokes at Social Media Addiction

Jukebox the Ghost's Tommy Siegel discusses his "500 Comics in 500 Days" project, which is now a new book, I Hope This Helps.


Kimm Rogers' "Lie" Is an Unapologetically Political Tune (premiere)

San Diego's Kimm Rogers taps into frustration with truth-masking on "Lie". "What I found most frustrating was that no one would utter the word 'lie'."


50 Years Ago B.B. King's 'Indianola Mississippi Seeds' Retooled R&B

B.B. King's passion for bringing the blues to a wider audience is in full flower on the landmark album, Indianola Mississippi Seeds.


Filmmaker Marlon Riggs Knew That Silence = Death

In turning the camera on himself, even in his most vulnerable moments as a sick and dying man, filmmaker and activist Marlon Riggs demonstrated the futility of divorcing the personal from the political. These films are available now on OVID TV.


The Human Animal in Natural Labitat: A Brief Study of the Outcast

The secluded island trope in films such as Cast Away and television shows such as Lost gives culture a chance to examine and explain the human animal in pristine, lab like, habitat conditions. Here is what we discover about Homo sapiens.


Bad Wires Release a Monster of a Debut with 'Politics of Attraction'

Power trio Bad Wires' debut Politics of Attraction is a mix of punk attitude, 1990s New York City noise, and more than a dollop of metal.


'Waiting Out the Storm' with Jeremy Ivey

On Waiting Out the Storm, Jeremy Ivey apologizes for present society's destruction of the environment and wonders if racism still exists in the future and whether people still get high and have mental health issues.


Matt Berninger Takes the Mic Solo on 'Serpentine Prison'

Serpentine Prison gives the National's baritone crooner Matt Berninger a chance to shine in the spotlight, even if it doesn't push him into totally new territory.


MetalMatters: The Best New Heavy Metal Albums of September 2020

Oceans of Slumber thrive with their progressive doom, grind legends Napalm Death make an explosive return, and Anna von Hausswolff's ambient record are just some of September's highlights.

Collapse Expand Reviews

Collapse Expand Features

PM Picks
Collapse Expand Pm Picks

© 1999-2020 PopMatters.com. All rights reserved.
PopMatters is wholly independent, women-owned and operated.