Los Angeles indie electro unit Capital Cities first came together as a duo of composers/songwriters Ryan Merchant and Sebu Simonian. The two initially met on craigslist in 2008 and worked as jingle writers until they formed the band in 2010.
They released an EP independently in 2011 that included the song “Safe and Sound,” an upbeat mesh of programming and melody that went viral and gained the act a lot of Internet exposure. Eventually, Merchant and Simonian were joined by bassist Manny Quintero, trumpeter Spencer Ludwig, guitarist Nick Merwin, and drummer Channing Holmes. The fully realized live version of Capital Cities played festivals internationally. Their debut full-length In a Tidal Wave of Mystery appeared on Capitol Records / Lazy Hooks in June 2013.