Review: Captain, We’re Sinking – The King of No Man

January 30th, 2018 by Kaili McDonald


Captain, We’re Sinking  

The King of No Man  

Rate: 10/10 

RIYL: The Menzingers, The Wonder Years, The Descendents 

As a whole The King of No Man definitely has a softer tone than Captain, We’re Sinking’s last album, The Future Is Cancelled, which was released in 2013. Despite this, The King of No Man is still very distinctly the punk sound of Captain, We’re Sinking. Overall, the album has mellow verses with heavier choruses. This album’s tracks have similar sounds to that of The Wonder Years, Knuckle Puck, The Gaslight Anthem, classic punk bands such as The Rites of Spring and The Descendents, and complimenting other out-of-genre influences. I feel like this album is like the Thanksgiving meal of punk; there’s so many sub-genre punk tracks that work deliciously well together. Below is just a taste of what the album is like: 

The first couple tracks of the album are a great way to introduce Captain, We’re Sinking’s fresh yet signature sound. The lyrics of “Trying Year” and “Books” set the punk-feels tone for the whole album. Phrases such as “Will we make it out of this? …I don’t know” from “Trying Year” emits a sense of confusion, while the first lyrics of “Books” are “Hold onto faith,” which implies hard times and gives off a sense of perseverance. Aside from the awesome and relatable lyrics, the sounds of both songs have pop-punk influences—kind of like Knuckle Puck’s tracks off of Copacetic without the soft, twinkly, guitar. 

Another track to be sure to listen to is “Don’t Show Bill.” It is probably the heaviest track in regards to guitar, drums, and vocals, on the whole album and it is beautiful. You can totally imagine a circle pit opening up and going crazy for the whole song, while people are screaming the lyrics, “THERE IS NOTHING WRONG!” That being said, “Don’t Show Bill” is a great song to emotionally run to on the treadmill. Equally as emotional as “Don’t Show Bill,” but in a different way, is “Smash 2.” If you’re really into the person that you’re dating, “Smash 2″‘s upbeat and staccato guitar strums is something you can totally tap your foot and bang your head to. It’s a great track to belt out in the shower with catchy lyrics such as, “This is us now and forever.” This uplifting song prepares you for the serious and heavy lyrics that are to come later in the album.  

One track in particular is a reference to The Future Is Cancelled, which is “The Future is Cancelled Pt.2.” This track emits a sense of eeriness and most definitely anger by stanzas of heavy guitar followed by lyrics with little intonation that call out one specific person, “Misdirected lust/The lies between us/Fate, so sedate/All the petty ways she has to hate us.” From the name of the song and the lyrics, this track makes me think of a terrible breakup in which a crazy ex-girlfriend hates her ex-boyfriend and all of his friends and attempts to make all of them miserable. In other words, this is a great song to listen to if you have an anger-inducing ex whose presence you can’t seem to escape.  

My top picks of the album are “Water” and “Crows (Little Wounds)” because of how easy they are to listen to and how easy it is to connect to the lyrics. Some parts of  “Water”‘s intro and vocals reminds of The Gaslight Anthem without the distortion. The lyrics “friends become strangers, strangers, they get old, fall apart” will echo in your head long after listening. Bobby Barnett proves he has some pipes on him in “Crow (Little Wounds),” which is probably my favorite breakup song at the moment. With lyrics like “Now you don’t sleep at night…I was lying again” and “this is the end of you and me,” it’s hard not to act as if you were punched straight in the feels like an arrow to a bullseye. Ultimately, that’ how I felt after listening to the album as a whole, but “Crow” really did me in. The next track I’ll write about is no exception, but it’s sound is quite different from the rest of the album, and different from what you may expect from a punk band.  

“Why does this punk track remind me of the Dave Matthews Band?” Is what I thought to myself when I heard the first sounds of “Dance of Joy.” As I kept listening, I still thought the same thing, but was pleasantly surprised with the outcome. The message of “you’ll be alright/keep your head up high” in the chorus is a refreshing change from the album’s sadder songs that precede “Dance of Joy,” which, when you listen to the drum beat, is a perfect title for this track.  Contrarily, the next and last track of the album has the opposite sentiments about bad decisions—not the fun kind. The album ends with “The King of No Man,” which is not as upbeat as the albums opener, “Trying Year,” and definitely has more depressing lyrics. In this track, you can almost hear the exhaustion and anger experienced that came from what “Trying Year” is written about: the track starts off really mellow with quiet drums, soft guitar leads, and Barnett’s voice is low and whisper-like, but, somehow, the track takes a turn into an intense explosion of heavy drums and defiant guitar strums when Barnett screams “I’m all alone.” 

Even though only a few songs are described above, the whole album is worth a listen If you’re into any type of punk, because chances are you will find at least one song that suits your punk-rocker style on this track. And for those of you who aren’t necessarily into punk, I still recommend listening to “Trying Year,” “Hunting Trip,” and “Dance of Joy” because they have a rock feel without the heaviness of punk. Ultimately, I encourage everyone to check out The King of No Man because you’ll be missing out on some pretty great tune-age if you don’t!  




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