GOTTA STAY POSITIVE King, Campol, and Carerra.
Tallahassee transplant (via Toronto) Kylewilliam Campol absolutely loves to call Rhode Island home, having moved here last May to further his career as a musician and establish the world headquarters for his post-punk outfit Imadethismistake — a move some homegrown cynics may consider ass-backwards. Florida boasts vibrant and influential punk communities, particularly in Tampa, Gainesville, and Tallahassee. Campol was drinking from the same tap as Hot Water Music and Against Me!, but wanted out after releasing two albums during his seven years down south. Campol is barely into his 20s and lives strictly off his music, and has performed more than 700 shows in basements and dorms and at festivals nationwide, as well as three European/UK tours, and the band's site (MySpace.com/Imadethismistake) just posted another European tour scheduled for June. He debuted in 2007 with the acoustic Tomorrow, We Start New (it was reissued by Blue Tape Media last year), and was followed by '08's It's Okay, which included fan favorite "There Are Clear Skies Beyond Tallahassee."
"Tallahassee is a hot, humid, and secluded college town, and the Greek community on FSU's campus is so large it can be hard to breathe or exist outside of frat parties," Campol told me. "I found the music community limited and pretentious, and it very quickly drove me away."
Campol is not shy about sharing his opinions, as evidenced on his entertaining blog (StopDropAndBreathe.Blogspot.com). He reiterated some of his observations when we recently spoke.
"It seems like both the east and west sides of Providence segregate themselves and don't intermingle at all, and the shows suffer because of it," Campol offered. "I wouldn't say there is a lack of venues as much as an overall lack of support and interest in shows."
But, Campol has no regrets.
"Providence is soaked in history, from the architecture to the culture, and I absolutely love the diverse music scene in Rhode Island," he said.
Campol's lyrics on the upcoming Bow and Quiver (due May 11 on Michigan-based punk label Bermuda Mohawk) have a constant ebb and flow underscored with seasonal depression (see "Winter In New Bedford"). Welcome to New England, Campol.
"The gray days here definitely bled into the songs," Campol told me prior to his first headlining show in Providence at AS220 on Monday. It was thje the final night of yet another three-week tour with new mates Neil King (drums) and Chris Carrera (bass) of hardcore locals Weak Teeth, who were recruited to record Bow and Quiver. The relocation up north has left an indelible impression on the burly, shaggy redhead. Bow and Quiver exudes little shades of gray all over, with bittersweet lyrics wise beyond his years delivered in a spoken word cadence which often gives way to a pogo-inducing, shout-along hook. There are quotable quips throughout; on "Rogue Island" Campol says, "I need a new place, I need some more time/the happiness I've been so desperate to find," before concluding with "Think positive, be rational and stay alert/three rules to making life all it's worth." "Life is about taking risks," Campol says before the all-out manic hook on "Weak Week," with his big guitar bursts accompanying the kinetic hooks. "This season breeds too much free time," Campol says on the standout cut "Billboards," with the effervescent chant of "Erase! Resist! Deface!"