King Krule, the 23-year-old Londoner Archy Marshall who has been releasing music since he was just 16 and first featured on Nialler9 way back in January 2011 finally played his debut Irish gig in the Academy, Dublin to a sold-out venue.
The core appeal of the King Krule sound hasn’t changed much since then. Marshall has a raspy howl that even as an adolescent swallowed up the air around it, dominated his music and the atmosphere with guitars and arrangements that slunk behind the voice. He may look like a bratty kid still in his posture but Marshall is growing into his aged timbre with ease.
On this year’s standout album The Ooz, his first album in four years, Marshall keeps his voice booming above all else, now sounding more textured and fitting. Behind him, a producer of minimal live music has developed his sound with a jazz nuanced and dark-shaded instrumentation. His music doesn’t burden itself, it looms menacingly in his noir late-night tales.
His voice owns the stage outright. Everything else is a supporting cast of colour. In the Academy, no matter the vantage point, Marshall’s guttural voice hung ominously and with an infectious aggression. Every word he sings is forced out like a roaring confession.
The jazz element to his music is amplified during his live performance (mostly via an enthusiastic live saxophonist) and the musical coordination of five-piece accompanied band on stage proves that he is not just a talented singer-songwriter but a progressive musician.
After a set of atmospheric music drawn largely from his latest album, it was the closer of the older 2013 track ‘Easy Easy’ with people dancing, moshing, singing and screaming – “Tesco stealing my moneeeeey,” in recognition that reminded how long Marshall has been making resonant music and how overdue this gig was. The ginger biscuit will be back.
After some teasing of her first new music in 9 years earlier this week, Karin Dreijer formerly of The Knife has returned to her solo Fever Ray project.
Far from the somewhat disturbing visual we saw yesterday teasing the song, ‘To The Moon And Back’ is the closest thing we’ve had to The Knife since they split in 2014. The song has the familiar electro mechanised beat and Knife-esque synth. It also has the line ‘I want to run my fingers up your p**y’ which on Spotify is given an Air Horn mix. The video for the song keeps things weird as the visuals proceeding it with a cryogenically frozen Karin reanimated.
Everything Is Recorded feat. Syd & Sampha – Show Love
Two of the best contemporary voices in R&B, The Internet’s Syd and Sampha get together with XL boss Richard Russell for yet another memorable track.
Smerz – No Harm
The Norwegian duo on XL Recordings made one of my favourite songs of 2016 and here they keep things odd and inviting.
It’s hard to pick a highlight from The Ooz, Archy Marshall’s new album as King Krule. My current favourite is the album opener which has a beat that sounds like it’s falling down the stairs on repeat as the lyrics slip deeper still – “He left the crime scene without the Motorola / still had dreams of being young Franco Zola.” A fine descent into one of the album’s of the month and possibly year.
From San Fran producer’s new album Too Real, his collaboration with Michelle Zauner aka Japanese Breakfast is an immediate warm cup of sonics, like a gentle EDM track that works. The album dropped today on Ninja Tune’s sublabel Counter Records.
DJ Seinfeld – Time Spent Away From You
Previews of Mr lo-fi house himself’s forthcoming album on November 3rd have raised expectations for an already buzzed about artist. Tracks like this proves their is substance beyond the style and movement tag applied to the Swedish producer.
Badbadnotgood – I Don’t Know (feat. Sam T. Herring)
A bonus collaboration between the nu-jazz Canadians and Future Islands singer after their fruitful get-together on the IV album last year on ‘Time Moves Slow’. Future Islands may as well be Future Irelands as they arrive to play Donnybrook next year. This track has a beautiful 70s soul quality to it.
Floating Points – Ratio
Anything Sam Shepherd does is worthy of a listen and as it’s Friday, why not indulge in the 18 minute version of this live favourite as opposed to the 3 minute one.
Archy Marshall’s guttural vowel-swallowing voice has been the biggest draw across nearly all his work a King Krule, Zoo Kid, DJ JD Sports Edgar the Beatmaker or his given name. That work has shown him to be a proficient producer too but The Ooz takes his talent to assured new heights. For his second King Krule album since 2013’s 6 Feet Beneath The Moon, it’s as if a black and white painting has become shaded with a depth of colour over time. The Ooz is a spacious cinematic piece of work – a late night tale, where danger lurks on every corner and our protaganist drifts in and out of noir landscapes of wasteland motorways, urban decay, broken homes and joyrides.
It’s good to hear a buzzed UK band come out the other side of their debut album with an even better release of scope, sonic ambition and songwriting prowess than before. Visions Of A Life. From the hedonistic roar of ‘Yuk Foo’ to the dreamy anthemic ‘Don’t Delete The Kisses’ to the delicate ‘After The Zero Hour’ and the expansive closer and title track, this is easily one of 2017’s best guitar/rock albums.
A dense and near schizophrenic album upon first listens, Annie Clark’s Jack Antonoff-produced fifth album has a hyper-real pop coat that barely contains searing guitar lines, electronic percussion and high-tempo busy rhythms. The album is at its best when it takes a breath and doesn’t crowd the songs with overactive sonics on songs like ‘Los Ageless’, ‘Happy Birthday, Johnny’ , ‘Pills’, ‘New York’ and “Savior’. Clark plays the Olympia in Dublin on Friday and Saturday.
And So I Watch You From Afar – The Endless Shimmering
The Belfast post-rock instrumentals deliver heft and a return to form on their new fifth album, which can be heard in full two days before release.
Blue Hawaii – Tenderness
You can catch Blue Hawaii in Dublin at the Workman’s Club next month on November 18th and Tenderness is a fine album by Raphaelle Standell (Braids singer) and Alexander Kerby who got their project back together after a four year hiatus in 2016. The album draws on relationships forged through online apps, disco rarities and ’90s dance music.
The always-reliable Awesome Tapes from Africa digs up a 1995 kwaito dance gem from South Africa’s Professor Rhythm. The label has had some great stuff in 2017 including Umoja’s 707′ and Om Alec Khaoli ‘Say You Love Me’ and this is no different. Joy. Brian and his Awesome Tapes From Africa are in the Sugar Club in Dublin on November 11th with Super Silly, Farah Elle courtesy of Woweembeem.
The Go! Team are back and for their first song since 2015’s The Scene Between. The Brighton band arrive with ‘Semicircle Song’ with a marching band, The Detroit Youth Choir. The band’s mastermind Ian Parton took inspiration from Northern soul, Japanese indie-pop and old-school hip hop and went to Detroit to record with a marching band and choir.
Boy Harsher – Westerners
Massachusetts duo Boy Harsher impressed me with the dark and swirling ‘Motion’ and here’s another from their debut EP, a pulsating electro track with atmospheric care-free abandon and an old-school beat.
SONDAR – Ready
Effervescent electro pop from Cait and Katie, a duo from Nashville.
Burial – Rodent
I’d become less interested in recent Burial releases due to familiarity or apathy. That’s on me perhaps but the latest track from the enigmatic producer finds him in his most direct clubbing state in quite a while. From the the relentless bassline to the hypnotic vocal line to the snatches of sax, ‘Rodent’ is a fresh sound from a producer who already has a trailblazing tag.
Palmbomen II – Ultimate Lovestory Fantasy
The latest release, Memories of Cindy 3, from the LA producer has his trademark textured ambience in full effect: revealing itself like a soft breath in a warm fogged tunnel.
Four Tet – Lush
A mellow and melodic highlight from Kieran Hebden’s largely understated new record New Energy.
St. Vincent – Pills
Annie Clark’s Jack Antonoff-produced album Masseduction is out today. Clark has always been one to root for – as a kickass female artist in a male-dominated guitar space, she’s proved herself more talented and ambitious than anyone yet sometimes, her songs remain stubborn to letting you in beyond admiration. ‘Pills’ is maybe the most pop thing Clark has ever done but it doesn’t lose the swagger that got her to where she is in the first place. She’s in Dublin next week.
Baths – Out
Will Wiesenfeld is back as Baths with a new album Romaplasm on Anticon on November 17th and the album takes inspiration from anime and video games. ‘Out’ has that vivd bounce to it and Will says the title is “a dual meaning—either referring to someone going out for the night, or being an out gay person. It touches on the intersection of both but mostly deals with how I feel in a club environment.” Here’s first single ‘Yeoman’.
King Krule – Half Man Half Shark
Archy Marshall’s newest album as King Krule might be his most complete yet (one listen in). Marshall has a tendency to let his drawl do all the work on tracks sometimes but there’s plenty of shade and energy on the new record to warrant further investigation. It’s still got that loose jazz feel at times and ‘Half Man Half Shark’ is one such typical highlight.
Archy Marshall aka King Krule is lined up to play a show at Dublin’s Academy on December 13th this year.
The first King Krule song in quite a while (since 2013) has been released too – a contemplative late-night song called ‘Czech One’ for listening here:
Tickets €25 includes booking fee, on sale Friday, 25th August at 10am. UK/EU pre-sale going up on Thursday, August 24 (10am local time) and on general sale Friday 25th August (10am local time).
10/21 – Washington, DC – Black Cat 10/22 – Philadelphia, PA – Union Transfer 10/24 – Brooklyn, NY – Warsaw 10/25 – Brooklyn, NY – Warsaw 10/26 – Boston, MA – Paradise 10/28 – Montreal, CAN – Corona Theatre 10/29 – Toronto, CAN – Danforth Music Hall 10/30 – Chicago, IL – Metro 10/31 – Minneapolis, MN – First Line Music Cafe 11/3 – Seattle, WA – The Showbox 11/4 – Portland, OR – Wonder Ballroom 11/5 – Vancouver, CAN – Vogue Theatre 11/7 – San Francisco, CA – The Fillmore 11/8 – Los Angeles, CA – Teragram Ballroom 11/9 – Los Angeles, CA – El Rey Theatre 11/20 – Bristol, UK – Marble Factory 11/21 – London, UK – Koko 11/22 – London, UK – Koko 11/23 – Leeds, UK – Belgrave Music Hall 11/26 – Paris, France – Casino De Paris 11/28 – Milan, Italy – Magazzini Generali 11/29 – Lyon, France – L’Epicerie Moderne 11/30 – Zurich, Switzerland – Rote Fabrik 12/1 – Cologne, Germany – Burgerhaus Stollwerck 12/3 – Hamburg, Germany – Uebel an Gefahrlich 12/4 – Berlin, Germany – Astra 12/5 – Copenhagen, Denmark – Vega 12/8 – Stockholm, Sweden – Vasateatern 12/10 – Amsterdam, Holland – Melkweg 12/11 – Antwerp, Belgium – De Roma 12/13 – Dublin, Ireland – Academy 12/14 – Manchester, UK – Academy 2 12/15 – Glasgow, UK – SW63
King Krule live at The Academy, Dublin – 13th December Tickets €25.00 go on sale this Friday at 10am
Didn’t get a chance to play this until today but it was worth the wait. NYC hip-hop collective Ratking and sulky boy wonder King Krule. Both acts are signed to XL so this was probably an easy thing to sort out. But also, Krule also moonlights as a beat producer Edgar The Beatmaker sometimes too. The tune reminds me of something from Rawkus back in the day.
It’s taken from Ratking’s debut LP So It Goes out on Hot Charity/XL in April.
The most lively track from King Krule’s debut album 6 Feet Beneath The Moon, ‘A Lizard State’ gets a video by Jamie-James Medina which replicates an illusory trick demonstrated by venerated director Alfred Hitchcock. I love how the footage stays the same ratio as that old footage and how the girl looking through the wall is reminiscent of Anthony Perkins aka Norman Bates in Psycho.
Released last Saturday on his 19th birthday, the release of Archy Marshall’s King Krule debut 6 Feet Beneath The Moon is a big milestone. From when he was Zoo Kid a few years ago to sporadic tracks as King Krule since, Marshall has shown a maturity beyond his teen years. When he was 16 he was showing off that gravel pit dirt voice in his beautifully meandering yet tender songs. The former Brit school student had a youthful swagger, a cockiness, a surety that he knew what he was doing.
So 6 Feet Beneath The Moon should be a significant milestone as well as a big one. For one so young to display a wise maturity, the expectation can be high. REVIEW & STREAM →
While ‘Easy Easy’ had Archy Marshall’s now established sound intact, this other new album track ‘Neptune Estate’ suggests that the album will not be as straightforward as that song. It’s got a jazzy meandering late-night vibe, not a million miles from King Krule collaborators Mount Kimbie working on a beat tape.
6 Feet Beneath the Moon is out in less than two weeks on True Panther/ XL on Saturday 24 August on Marshall’s 19th birthday.
One of my highlights of Glasto this year was King Krule’s set on the Park stage. Having followed the kid for a few years now, it was great to hear Archy Marshall’s rasp in real life especially as it was backed by a band of his peers who were an able match for his nuanced arrangements.
Great news then that King Krule’s debut album 6 Feet Beneath the Moon has a release date, Saturday 24 August 2013, Marshall’s 19th Birthday through by True Panther Sounds and XL Recordings.’Easy Easy’ is the first track from it, and it’s got that idiosyncratic wandering King Krule sound.
After my song of the year ‘Made To Stray’ and ‘Blood and Form’ comes ‘You Took Your Time’, one of two songs in which King Krule features on Mount Kimbie’sCold Spring Fault Less Youth album out on May 27th on Warp, one release I really want to hear this month. Mount Kimbie were announced as one of the supports at The xx’s O2 gig alongside Jagwar Ma on Wednesday 26th June too.
Continuing the four part series this week, in no particular order, in which various artists, media and music fans I trust answer the question: “What are your five best new musical discoveries of the year?” Their answers were then rummaged through by me and I picked a cross-section list of 40 of the most interesting, diverse new artists from their choices.
In January 2010, I started writing about this kid Archy Marshall. In his short time as a musician under the name Zoo Kid and King Krule, he’s demonstrated a gift of nuance and texture far beyond his teenage years. His voice is a craggy broken sound of someone who has lived a much fuller life than a young man. So, it’s not hard to imagine that Marshall has done some serious growing up in the last year considering all the attention he has received. ‘Rock Bottom’ is further evidence of that growth, a sound only punctured by the ending lyric of an outside influence from Mike Skinner. It’s out on 7″ this month.
It’s still hard to believe that Archy Marshall aka King Krule is in fact so young. Still only 17 and he sounds like he’s been through a war of emotions. In this live version, he demostrates what it is he does best, a loose and limber arrangement out of a world-weary song that starts with “just another disappointed soul..”. Archy certainly has an old soul. More impressively, he wrote this song as Zoo Kid when he 15.