Interview: East Capri talk new single “Not What You Want”, influences and visual storytelling

Credit: Jackson Deasy

Brisbane alt-rock trio East Capri are one of the most exciting acts to emerge on the local heavy scene in recent years. The band shared their empowering single “Not What They Want” last Friday, the latest in a string of fresh tunes since their debut EP Wake n Repeat in 2021. This melodic anthem shines with glossy vocals and shimmering riffs in a proclamation of acceptance and freedom. It also boasts stunning visuals by Andrew Vaughan (Windwaker, Days Like These) in a contrast between grey industrial sets and splashes of vibrant neon.

In celebration of the release, we caught up with vocalist Eden Cartwright and guitarists Jackson Deasy and Jamal Irlam to learn more about the band.

Where does the name East Capri come from?

We really wish we had a good story about how we came up with East Capri but honestly, it’s mundane, and it doesn’t even mean anything! However, this is a very common question we’re asked about because the name is kind of obscure for a band in the alternative metalcore realm, which was the main goal.

We wanted a band name that you couldn’t really guess what genre we’d sound like or fall into, which is kind of our philosophy. If you heard a band/group called East Capri, you wouldn’t at first know if we were a pop band, hip hop band or even a djent/mariachi/progressive bagpipe band. We kind of like our listeners not knowing our next move.

We wanted a band name that had ‘East’ in it but struggled for so long coming up with anything that would stick. Then one day, Jackson rode past this building in Fortitude Valley in Brisbane called ‘Capri’ and decided that East Capri was the name. It does the job!

How would you pitch your style to a stranger in an elevator?

Hey, how’s it going? Ah nice, we’re both going to the rooftop bar as well! You wouldn’t happen to know of any djent/mariachi/progressive bagpipe bands local to Brisbane, would you? We don’t sound like that; we just want to open up for a band like that. We’re more of a band that’s loosely a part of the alternative metalcore genre that ties a lot of different genres like R&B, hardcore and emo-pop together.

Who are some of your biggest influences?

Our biggest influences early on when it came to our music have definitely been bands such as Dayseeker, Bring Me the Horizon and Rain City Drive, who at the time were called Slaves, with Jonny Craig as the frontman. But as of late, our influences have been heading towards bands like I Prevail, Fever 333, The 1975, Lo Spirit and The Plot in You.

What has been your proudest achievement as a band so far?

The proudest achievements we’ve had so far have not been released to the public, yet! 😉

The visuals for 2023 singles “CLEANOUT” and “Veil Vision” seem to have the same sci-fi action movie aesthetic. How does “Not What They Want” tie in with this theme?

This is a very great question! We make the effort for the visuals to tie in with the message of the songs, but the music videos mostly have their own stories and lore. As you may have noticed, there is a recurring female character played by Emily Sands named Aemilia.

Aemilia is kind of a higher power or being that occupies multiple times and dimensions controlling what happens to members of the band. Sometimes she will have us tortured just to come to save us at the end, then sometimes she’ll bring a friend along and earn our trust just to betray us. In this story, we are the operatives seeking her out in a dead and baron world that she created.

We’re huge anime and video game enthusiasts, so we love creating deep and immersive characters and stories.

What is your favorite hometown venue to play?

Sadly, there aren’t that many decent small to medium sized venues in Brisbane anymore, which is a shame because it’s where we get the chance to be a bit more intimate with that crowd. There’s just more intense connection playing right in with our fans than being up on a high stage away from our people, but the Brightside has got to be the best venue and best experience we’ve ever played so far.

When can we see you perform live next?

We have plans in the works for tours and shows. Our last Aussie Tour with To Octavia and RinRin went way better than we hoped, so we’re pumped and working on getting back on the road ASAP! We’re still waiting to lock in a few things before we can announce anything, but we promise shows are coming!

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