Whether you adored them to tears or they annoyed the hell out of you, there’s no denying their impact on the emo/indie world. Me? I got a copy of their album taped for me by a kind soul named James, who deemed it absolutely necessary for me to have my very own copy. Over time it got copied for others, worn out, and finally baked in my car. It was remembered as most perfect for road trips and loud singing along.
So yes, I’m one of those who find them brilliant songcrafters. They had a penchant for trying odd things within their songs and making them work wonderfully. Lyrics were filled with smart wordplay, and their songs were just plain great. Energy, wonder, and noisy melody combined with diverse structures, strange approaches, and a dash of pop catchiness here and there. Vocals sing, yell, strain, and break over music that sometimes drifts, sometimes explodes, but almost always rocks. Even now I’m nodding my head, almost singing along.
Being such an amazing band, they broke up. Members went on to the Promise Ring and Joan of Arc, who are also both amazing. Secrets got out, and more people discovered the well of Cap’n Jazz. Bomb threats ensued (well, not quite), and Jade Tree buckled under the pressure, finally releasing this double CD compilation of everything imaginable Cap’n Jazz, including the album, seven inches, comp tracks, and some live and 8-track stuff. And yes, there’s unreleased stuff, so even you need this, Mister Collector. Jade Tree, 2310 Kennwynn Rd., Wilmington, DE 19810