Kings In Exile

Here's To The Future

Written by: PP on 29/03/2012 05:32:25

Buckling to major label pressure probably isn't the way you want to start your career in music, but that's exactly what Danish radio rockers Fast Gallows did in order to get signed to Warner. Since the label already owned Britain's caustic hardcore crew Gallows on their international roster (in retrospect, it was the opposite way around), they basically said take it or leave it, thereby forcing Fast Gallows' hand and leading them to change the name into Kings In Exile.

To sell out like that may have been the smartest choice in their career, though, given how their entire expression on their sophomore album "Here's To The Future" is based on a genre I like to call radio rock. Think Audioslave, Velvet Revolver, Life Of Agony, or even local rockers in Saint Rebel. The idea has been to solely focus on kick ass, driving rock'n'roll riffs and a post-grungy vocal style that you encountered in dozens upon dozens of American post-grunge bands around the switch of the millennium. To be successful in what most people perceive as a rather shallow genre really requires a serious marketing push on the radio and media that only a major label can provide, so it appears that Kings In Exile have made the right decision in the end. It helps, of course, that the band has written a collection of excellent songs within the genre that avoid sounding dated while providing huge, anthemic choruses and a string of memorable moments that should help push the band into the minds of everyone who ever used to listen to the bands mentioned earlier.

"Sailor" and "Save Me" are prime examples of Kings In Exile's strengths. By concentrating on rock hard choruses and big sing alongs instead of artistic integrity or complexity, the songs come across as unpretentious and unassuming, instead preferring to woo the listener through sheer power, whether found in the instruments or the choruses. Quite simply, these are big time songs designed for larger stages, and especially the American audience, although the consistent and technically proficient soloing in the background should be enough to create appeal within the Guns'N'Roses and classic rock loving mainstream Danish music listener as well.

What's better, they've even written a brilliant ballad in "What Does It Take". Ballads are not normally my type of thing, but Kings In Exile perform an exemplary version of the 'slow ballad' and turn it into one of the best songs on the record overall. That's impressive, because as you regular readers know, I fuckin' hate ballads. It's also telling of the album's overall quality: there are really no bad songs to be found on the record. Yes, it is unoriginal and a rehash of a rehash of a rehash in its essence, but as we have previously seen in, for example, the punk rock scene, as long as you have solid songs, that doesn't matter. That's precisely why Kings In Exile get my stamp of approval.

Download: Sailor, Save Me, What Does It Take
For the fans of: Audioslave, Velvet Revolver, Saint Rebel, Life Of Agony
Listen: Facebook

Release date 31.10.2011

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