Marske-by-the-Sea artist Cape Cub will release his debut EP, Closer, on 25th March – watch the stunning visuals to its title track below.
Having accumulated huge numbers of plays across SoundCloud and Spotify with his trio of 2015 uploads – as well as over 1,000,000 listeners on Mr Suicide Sheep’s YouTube channel for the outstanding ‘Keep Me In Mind’ – emerging artist, Cape Cub returned in February with a new track, ‘Closer’, the first song to be taken from his upcoming debut EP of the same name. ‘Closer’ has been heavily supported by Radio 1’s Phil Taggart and Huw Stephens in recent weeks, now Cape Cub is airing the track’s accompanying visuals – which showcase the dramatic scenery of his native Northeast. Cape Cub has also added extra dates to his UK tour diary, with his London headline debut penciled in on 30th March at The Waiting Room.
Inspired by beautiful landscapes and particularly the vast open spaces surrounding his hometown – tiny Marske-by-the-Sea – Chad Male, aka Cape Cub, perfectly captures a snapshot of the calming friction between an ever-changing coastline and the gritty, naturally alluring post-industrial North on his debut EP, Closer.
Raised on his dad’s diet of Bowie, Thin Lizzy and The Beatles, Chad first picked up a guitar at age nine and soon found himself making his first – initially messy – forays into songcraft. Nonetheless, his early efforts landed him in a string of noisy indie bands, and lit a fuse for what was to follow next: a eureka moment in his mum’s loft, where ‘Swim’ was written, using a super-lo-fi practice amp — a world away from the bold lights of London where he finally finished the soothing, people searching compositions now collected under the Cape Cub banner today.
Having enlisted the help of James Earp and Luke Fitton, producers of lead single ‘Closer’ and ‘Keep Me In Mind’ respectively, Chad moved out of the attic and added more flesh to ‘Swim’ and another new track, ‘The Start’, at the studio he’s based at near home. The final EP became a document of isolation, of longing, of questions of growing up, of questions of home, and of whether you should stay or go, all wrapped up with Chad’s sweetly melancholic voice and cinematic melodies, which mirror the swell of the North Sea surf seamlessly.
Nodding to the iconic storytelling, vividly human imagery and natural showmanship of Springsteen, Death Cab For Cutie and Brandon Flowers, as well as the new wave of contemporary British alternative electronic and pop producers in Shura and The Japanese House, the EP’s lead track, ‘Closer’ is a startlingly well-observed note to “fragility and the painful side of love, when you give your all and there seems to be nothing on the other side.” That subtle lyrical despondency is flipped upside down with Chad’s sensitive vocal, soporific guitars and softly churning beats coming to the fore, burnishing ‘Closer’ to a positive, hopeful sheen. It’s a fitting introduction to an EP rooted in the vitalness and warmth of human relationships.
Speaking about the ‘Closer’ video, Chad said: “Our drummer Mendo directed the video; we discussed how you can find something beautiful in anything if you look at it right. Many would view a post-industrial landscape as an eyesore. Instead, we wanted to pull all those elements out of it and instead focus on the nostalgia, the hope, the history, the striking silhouettes, and the sense of abandonment. It represents a part of where we’re from.”
NEWCASTLE Newcastle Uni SU 23rd March*
GLASGOW QMU 24th March*
LEEDS Leeds Uni Stylus 25th March*
STOCKTON Stockton Calling 26th March
BRISTOL The Louisiana 28th March
MANCHESTER The Castle Hotel 29th March
LONDON The Waiting Room 30th March
NEWCASTLE Cluny 2 21st April
LEEDS Live At Leeds 30th April
DARLINGTON Hole In The Wall 8th May
MIDDLESBROUGH The Westgarth 26th May
(*supporting Sunset Sons)