Almost Acoustic Christmas: Photos, recaps, interviews, and more!

“That was the official first midday dance party we’ve had here at the [Red Bull Sound Space at KROQ],” exclaimed KROQ’s Ted Stryker after Capital Cities played a dance-driven, sweaty set at the Red Bull Sound Space At KROQ. “That was pretty fun.”

“Pretty fun” is a great way to describe this band complete with epic trumpet solos. Capital Cities‘ geographical name mixed with their self-described “thoughtful electro/pop music” might inspire images of jet-setting playboys a la Phoenix or Air, but the Los Angeles-based duo started as two musically-talented jingle-penning locals who met through the sometimes shady medium of Craigslist in 2008.

“Don’t ask for details,” quietly laughs Sebu Simonian as Stryker pointed out that this time around the pair got lucky considering the Craigslist murderer and “serial hooker” films that website has inspired.


But Simonian wasn’t looking for a partner to pay with “roses.” Rather, the producer was looking for artists to work for while partner Ryan Merchant was looking for a producer for a solo project. Merchant was the “first and only” person who responded.

Judging from their success in projects like their music production company Lazy Hooks and the subsequent transformation of Capital Cities from a “bag of songs” to a band in 2010, placing that Craigslist ad may have been one of the best decisions Simonian made.

Capital Cities - Portrait

The pair compliment each other perfectly, even down to their co√∂rdinated dance moves and incandescent harmonies on songs like hit single “Safe and Sound.”

“It just so happens that both of us have been lead singers in other bands and then we formed this band and it just was a natural progression,” explained Merchant. “It was kind of hard; we’re still dialing it in. But it was fun.”

Capital Cities will be playing their “first official headlining tour” this spring at locations across the United States including a stop at the El Rey in Los Angeles on June 6th.

Their self-titled EP is available now on Capital Records.


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