Brainfever! Unfortunately, the production on this album is as thin as a hobo’s wallet, but Brainfever compensated for the low-budget recording with a batch of solid songs. Capture The Night remains a rough diamond; a fine example of mid-eighties melodic metal (with a penchant for speed) that deserves a little justice.
Capture The Night was released on vinyl in 1984 by the Belgian heavy metal label, Mausoleum Records (catalog: SKULL 8362). The Mausoleum edition also had a catalog i.d. from the German label, Earthshaker Records (ES 4003). Therefore, one can deduce that Capture The Night was some sort of co-release by the two labels. In the “Info Nuggets” section below, I have attempted to explain the relationship between Mausoleum Records and Earthshaker Records.
In 1994, Capture The Night officially appeared on CD for the first time. This release was part of the Mausoleum ‘Classix’ series (catalog: 704133.2). The Mausoleum Classix CDs were re-issues of selected albums from Mausoleum’s back catalog. These albums were originally released on vinyl during Mausoleum’s original run as a record label from 1983-1986. There are at least 42 re-issues in the Mausoleum Classix series. These CDs are out of print and fairly rare. They are sought after by collectors because in many cases they are the only instance of an official CD release of an old Mausoleum LP. Be aware, there are near-identical bootlegs of the Mausoleum Classix CDs out there.
Another CD version of Capture The Night was released in 2006 by Cult Metal Classics Records (catalog #029). Cult Metal Classics Records are a sub-label of Sonic Age Records. It is unclear to me whether this edition is a legit release or a bootleg. I know that Cult Metal Classics Records has a shady past that includes trying to bootleg New Renaissance Records releases (until New Renaissance took action). Also, Cult Metal Classics Records is a Greek label, and Greece is notorious for producing bootlegs. So proceed with caution. (I’ve never heard this version so I do not know if sounds like ass or not. However, I have read that the Cult Metal Classic edition of Capture The Night was ripped directly from the vinyl and not from master tapes, which, if true, means it’s probably a boot.) This release contains two bonus tracks; You and Dangerous Lies. These two bonus tracks were taken from Brainfever’s 1988 EP, You (Steamhammer 55 7559).
Gallery (click to enlarge):
- Alfie Falkenbach, the founder of Mausoleum Records, called Brainfever (along with Atlain and Fact) one of the “not-so-hot acts” of the Mausoleum label. This quote is from his 2002 essay about the label’s early years which appears on Mausoleum-Records.com. Based on this quote, I gather Capture The Night did not sell very well!
- Capture The Night was Brainfever’s only LP for Mausoleum. Their follow-up, Face To Face was released by Bellaphon Records (1985).
- An earlier version of the track Capture The Night was released as a single in 1982, backed with the cut Vagary.
- Capture The Night was produced by Axel Thubeauville, a former A&R man for Mausoleum Records (Most notably, he was responsible for ‘discovering’ Warlock and signing them to Mausoleum.) He was also the founder of Earthshaker Records. In 1984 he started Earthshaker Records in order to release Steeler’s self-titled debut album. (Steeler was another band that Axel ‘discovered’.) However, Earthshaker Records and Mausoleum Records maintained a working partnership. In fact, Mausoleum re-released Steeler after Thubeauville was unable to successfully market the LP through his own channels. Earthshaker’s next release was a re-mix of Living Death’s LP, Vengeance Of Hell, which was originally released by Mausoleum. The next four Earthshaker releases were co-released by Mausoleum. These albums were Brainfever’s Capture The Night, Fact’s As A Matter Of…, Steeltower’s Night Of The Dog, and Atlain’s Living In The Dark. So in the early going, it appears that Earthshaker still needed Mausoleum’s help to distribute and market their albums. Earthshaker went on to release several more albums on their own until 1986. (Information for this nugget was taken from an interview with Axel Thubeauville published on metalkings.com.)
My Worthless Opinion: Capture The Night is very solid album from the Mausoleum scrap heap. My favorite track would have to be the addictive Tool For The Show, a brisk number with a soaring chorus. There really isn’t a dull moment on the whole platter. My score: A-