Kap Bambino are two pieces of dynamite rubbed together with careless abandon - a sloppy kiss with the night air, a grind on the dance floor, some sort of sinister plot to look at you in the restroom when you’re sitting on the throne. The French duo, Orion and Caroline, weave intricate synth, bass and vocals with a thrashing motion, like so many other evolutions of punk, the electro
phase has singed the edges, creating a disregard for form and placing it on a pedestal.
Caroline and Orion have tired expressions on their face when they sit down for an interview. They’re jetlagged. But not just jetlagged they’re jetlagged times two, because it’s one thing to fly from Paris to the East Coast, but it’s another thing to fly immediately afterwards to the West Coast and tour and play to crowds of dancing crazies. The night before they played to a some-what full house at club Arena in Hollywood. The crowd was mixed, but a bit on the heavy side with 18-year old boys on boys and girls on boys and girls and everything in between. It was like dropping blood into a shark tank.
There are crumbs and grime on the table where Caroline and Orion sit for a mid-afternoon breakfast. There’s a limp piece of lettuce from the previous party who ate at the table, but Caroline carefully plucks the green leaf and flings it across the table, where it’s hurled through the air with good intentions.
And she starts firing off in her best English.
“We don’t know, cause it’s just a natural habit, right, so there they are,” says Caroline, with a thick accent that causes her to sound out each word, but they’re fired off with machine gun accuracy so sometimes she says things and goes, “oh wait.” She continues to say, “it’s like a dance party, it’s really really amazing. I love these people. It’s really nice energy and spontaneity,” all the while Orion is nodding his head in agreement, but sort of staring off at the waitress who took his order for an afternoon Heineken one minute ago.
They roll their eyes when the words Crystal and Castles are uttered, but they smile, because the similarity is obviously there.
Any other time Caroline opens her mouth in an interview she sort of finds her way back to the expression “Kill the Beast.” It’s something that causes her face to light up and today is no exception.
“Kill the Beat is just like my, I don’t know how you say, like my,” and she holds her hands above her head, as though she were holding up a sign, “my motto, yeah it means my motto. It’s like, you know, to get out the bad thoughts. To…exercise?” And Orion nods his head and agrees, “Yeah, exercise.”
“I don’t know, when I hear that word I feel like it means, to exercise, like to work out,” and she punches into the air to a beat that only she can hear. There’s a smile on her face, because she’s explained something, but what nobody at the table knows.
Caroline opts for a milkshake instead of a beer and it arrives and it’s pink and it has whipped cream and she sort of smiles and readjusts herself in the booth and she smiles again.
“We’ve had to brush our teeth like three times today, because of the Vodka smell,” she admits.
Kap Bambino shuns instruments. On stage Orion hovers over a laptop and produces heavy bass lines, soaring synth beats and liquid drums that sort of go with it, but get loud and slosh around in everyone’s ears. Caroline has the ability to go three hundred miles an hour with her voice and then stop and go “Yeah” or “Oh” and “C’mon” but it’s never audible and never entirely directed at anyone in particular. Previous shows on the West Coast took place in Tijuana, Mexico, where guns were brought to the venue and Orion got hassled by a police officer on the street.
“But it was really not a police, it was how you say, a guy with a gun,” Orion admits to smoking on a corner in T.J. so he smiles too, because it’s a story to tell about the crazy Mexicans in this part of the world.
Kap Bambino’s latest album, Black List, is a series of high-energy exercise sessions, where the demon’s are wrestled to the ground and pushed out – where late night camera sessions on night vision mode show the whites and glaring pupils of those who dance. And Caroline and Orion are happy that they can include bat caves into their album, but they don’t know why.
“We just put it there, because we like vampires, dark places, stuff like that, yeah,” Caroline says and Orion nods his head. They both grin, because it’s too early to start thinking about magic.