Beak> (Geoff Barrow) @ VIVID 16.12.09

This is an album that wears its influences on its sleeve from the off, but it matters not a jot as it combines them in such a creative an compelling manner that one is sucked in from the first note. Opening track ‘Backwell’ is so Krautrock it hurts, beginning with a propulsive, steady bass-line with an underlying organ part. When the NEU!-style drums kick in, it’s hard not to grin, and realise a treat is in store.

Muso’s Guide October 2009

Beak>, from Bristol, count Portishead’s Geoff Barrow among their number. Despite the maths sign in their name, the trio’s debut explores the unmathematical, analogue grooves of Krautrock, with driving motorik beats, hypnotic basslines, intense swells of organ and mantric vocals. Countless bands cite vintage German rock as an influence, but this lot actually sound out-there enough to justify comparison.
The Telegraph October 2009

Geoff Barrow and his new band-mates clearly have a mindset that refuses to co-opt the shit which we are all force-fed these days.Or perhaps Beak> is born out of a desire to cut loose after the torturous process of writing and recording the last Portishead album. Whatever the spur, there is a vibrancy to Beak> which smacks you in the ears immediately. Vibrancy is a commodity you will no doubt see referenced often in music reviews, but this is the real deal folks
Drowned in Sound

Beak>’s debut tour stops in Birmingham as part of the Capsule 10th Birthday celebrations

Thought Forms
Heath Mill Lane , Digbeth
Advance Tickets


Melt Banana circa 2003

Clearly a popular show here are some more photos taken from the Melt Banana show in 2003 at the Medicine Bar, these have been sent in by Stef Grindley aka Selfctrl


Capsule archive

Our friend Lee Basford just sent us a folder full of photos he’s taken over the years at Capsule shows – which included West Brom retrobates Solway Fifth, the hyper super-adrenalized, maxi-caffeinated Melt Banana & the mighty duo Lightning Bolt. Feel free to send us your images too.

The West Brom crew back in the day  – Solway Fifth

melt_2Melt Banana performing in the Medicine Bar in 2003 with support from Trencher & Esquilax

lightning_boltLightning Bolt in 2004 in what is now the Theatre Space at the Custard Factory


Oxbow review on Brum Live

Photos by Katja Ogrin
Review by Duncan Wilkins

Oxbow headlining was fitting in many ways, not least their completed checklist of Capsule specialities – Performance in a venue not notable for live shows? Check. (see their 2005 appearance at the Demon lapdancing club). Supersonic appearance? Check. Raucous debut show upstairs at the Jug of Ale, most probably with bleedin’ Mistress supporting? Check. Aided by two support bands with personnel boasting similarly impressive track records over the past ten years, this gig was perfect as an – apologies in advance – encapsulation of their strengths as promoters.

Read full review on Brum Live


Joe Lally of Fugazi fame plays Birmingham

joe_webposterComing to Birmingham this Monday bass player of  FUGAZI, JOE LALLY will be playing at the Hare & Hounds. We’re over the moon as we’re enormous fans of FUGAZI and have fond memories of when we put them on at the Sanctuary way back in 2002. A definite high five moment when Jenny & I were backstage playing scrabble while the band sound checked with ‘Communication Breakdown’.
Support comes from the JUNEAU PROJECTS + CHAIRMAKER.
THIS IS A NOT TO BE MISSED SHOW – please feel free to help us spread the word!
Advanced tickets available from
Swordfish/Polar Bear


Oxbow show change of venue

oxbow_rainbowPLEASE NOTE CHANGE OF VENUE this show was due to take place at VIVID but has now been moved to the RAINBOW PUB on Digbeth High Street, just past the Custard Factory
doors are at 7.30pm and the show will be over by 10.30pm please make sure you arrive early.
Advanced Tickets from Polar Bear/Swordfish

WEDNESDAY sees a welcome return to the mighty OXBOW, jazz infused, Birthday Party style noise, they produce a live show where you never know what might happen, an element which is as exciting as it is scary. Support for this show comes TRANSITIONAL featuring Dave Cochrane (Head Of David/Grey Machine) and LIGHT TRAP which boasts comprised of John (Haxan, ex Doom & Sore Throat), Doug (Una Corda) and Nic (ex Napalm Death & Scorn).

Oxbow Duo at Supersonic Festival 2007


Capsule archive – what have you got?

So folks as you know by now Capsule will be celebrating our 10th birthday in December and as part of a month long celebration we’re moving into Vivid, an art space in Digbeth. Not only will we be hosting a series of live shows with the likes of Lightning Bolt, Monotonix and Beak> alongside some of our favourite Brummies – we’re also producing an exhibition which delves deep into our archive. This will feature 10 years worth of flyers, photos and related ephemera.


Which comes onto our call out – if you have any photos from past shows or video footage, sound recordings, related stories, memories, reviews, blog posts  please get in touch – all contributions will be included in our exhibition.
Get in touch directly – info[at]

or if you have a comment/story or memory of fav show to add you can leave something in the comments on this blog post.

matt_officeMatt Snowden aka one half of Esquilax and the brains behind the Dream Dreams The Dreamer Orkestra popped by last week with a box full of treasures which included loads of old Capsule flyers and photos he’d taken at past gigs. It sure brought back a load of good memories for us.
matt_oxesThis photo was taken at an Oxes show in 2001 at the Jug Of Ale – it was a rather sweaty & raucous night to say the least.
lightning_mattHere is one of Lightning Bolt from 2004 when they played in what is now the theatre space at the Custard Factory – again this was one of those unforgettable shows.

Summed up perfectly by Kris from Ideal Skate shop
Sat at home on a Monday night 6 years ago I got a call recommending that I come to the Custard Factory to see this band that I had not heard of and an hour later I was in the most amazing sonic maelstrom. This was the first time I saw Lightning Bolt.
It was the best chance i ever took…..
Thank you Capsule.
I owe you…xxx”

Dig deep and hunt out those old photos or just send us a comment – all contributions gratefully received – there may even be prizes!!!


The House of Fairy Tales ‘Travelling Art Circus’

Jenny & I will be volunteering this weekend to help out with what is set to be an amazing event at New Art Gallery Walsall The House of Fairy Tales ‘Travelling Art Circus’ created by artists Gavin Turk and Deborah Curtis. There will be over 60 artists and performers from all over the country  celebrating all things dark and ghoulish. Entertainment, as it used to be before TV,

Outside in the square a feast with parkin, spit roasts and miniature toffee apples served from the Witches Gingerbread House as a series of characters welcome you to the past.

Join us in a Medieval March through the streets of Walsall, led by the Musical Hall musicians The Dead Victorians. Explore the ghosts and dark side of our nature through drawing, puppets, drama and theatre with Pegasus, the travelling Horsewagon theatre. Experience Carnival Games with a twist, treats from The Witches Gingerbread House and Navarac the mirrored caravan. Witness improvised drama and storytelling from the Story Pirates, film projection, potato sculptures with NoNose, the Museum of Prodigies, Live Freak Shows from Mental Floss and Georgina White Aldworth the Visitors From Another Dimension, medieval band Princes in the Tower, folk singers Fanny Feeney with Tudor Ballads and The Marvellous Sam Lee with his old English voice, Zombie DJs, Mexican wrestling displays and Material Transformations from Ian Dawson. Join Matt Harling in his Bubble Dome for mad science experiences, Jim Bond and his Kinetic Ghost Challenge, fortune teller Madame de La Cartomancer and her tarot cards, Sefi the Snake Lady and her snake charming act, burlesque French DJ’s Les Apaches, Marika Rauscher singing Macabre Opera, The Lonesome Cowboys From Hell and their unique Texan Shakespearean stage act. Rhiannon Evans and Liam Ramsden present and gather Herbal Medicine, Folklore for the Ethnomedica project at Kew Gardens and spooky tales of the night with Don’t Tell Stories, courtesy of writer and storyteller Rachel Newsome. Also discover a Surreal installation, from creative arts organisation Container PLUS.

Saturday 31 Oct, 12pm – 5pm over a dozen workshops including lantern making, props, costumes, potato sculptures, fortune telling, exploricating, herbalism, freak shows, museums of curiosity.

Sunday 1 Nov, 11am – 4pm Gallery Square and various rooms throughout the Gallery itself.


Saturday 31 Oct at 6pm, Dress up and join us for a parade with a difference from the Sister Dora statue on the Bridge all the way to Gallery Square.


Saturday 31 Oct until 11pm, Gallery Square and in the Gallery foyer, including live stage with bands and performances.

What’s even more amazing is that its all free – for further details check out

For more information visit