For those who were paying attention to the UK indie rock/punk underground during those periods of pandemic lockdown during 2020 and ’21, the name Das Kapitans will be a familiar one. As the world slowly ground to a halt, the band went into recording overdrive by releasing twelve albums’ worth of material at a rate that would’ve made Guided By Voices man Robert Pollard seem lazy.
Their 2022 release ‘Debut’, then, isn’t a debut in the true sense; nor does it mean that the band consider their dozen lo-fi Bandcamp releases in anyway unofficial or unimportant. The title comes from the fact that it’s actually the first Das Kapitans disc to be recorded “properly”, with far more care – and with all of the band members present at all times. This gives the album an extra level of professionalism, but those who’ve already taken the time to explore the band’s rapidly assembled catalogue and fallen for its ragged and noisy charms needn’t worry about this being too polished. Yes, in many ways, the material sounds better, but it never really loses any of the band’s rough and ready spirit, and the expected big riffs are still at the forefront of the best material.