Capital Cities Explains How They United Pink Floyd & Tupac For ‘Breathe’

"It's not a strange song, but it's a strange experiment."
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Capital Cities (Photo: Jake Hagopian for EMI)

Capital Cities (Photo: Jake Hagopian for EMI)

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Ryan Merchant and Sebu Simonian have scored their first radio hit, as the L.A.-based electro rock band Capital Cities with Safe and Sound. With one tune in rotation, the dancing duo took a moment to explain the story behind their imaginative cover song, “Safe and Sound.”

Simonian explained how he and Merchant were big fans of “Breath,” the second song on Pink Floyd’s 50 million seller Dark Side Of The Moon. Doing justice to the revered classic rock song was no easy task. To complicate matters, they decided to add some special sauce.

“We definitely gave it a different twist,” Simonian told “It sounds a little hip-hop-ish, a little trip hop-ish and we decided to incorporate the Tupac Shakur verse sample to twist it up, a verse that we found online somehow fit perfectly with the theme.”


Capital Cities are no strangers to creative covers. In concert, the band has famously covered Madonna‘s classic club anthem “Holiday” as well as “Nothing Compares 2 U,” the sappy single composed by Prince but made famous in 1990 by Sinead O’Conner.


Capital Cities’ live performance, along with those from the Black Keys, Thirty Seconds To Mars, Vampire Weekend and more will be streamed live Saturday, May 18 as part of the KROQ Weenie Roast 2013.

Capital Cities’ 5-song self-titled debut EP is available now.

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