King's Eden

After Party

Written by: BV on 05/06/2013 20:49:23

King’s Eden is an all-female blues/garage/punk duo from Halifax, Canada consisting of Heather Doran (guitars, vocals) and Jocelyn Conway (drums). With their eclectic blend of soulful rock tones and blistering punk/garage attitudes their debut album “After Party” can best be described as an up-tempo onslaught of constant riffing, notoriously fast drumming and cowbell sounds. In honesty, that sounds fucking cool on paper, but the execution is still a bit off.

With opening track “After Party” the fuzzy guitar riffs demand the focus from the start, but as the non-stop cowbell playing enters the soundscape I’m instantly confounded and amused at the same time. As the vocals enter, I can’t help but feel enthralled by the sheer amount of unbridled energy and attitude that has been captured in this, as well as many of the other tracks on this album. If this is what their live sound is like as well, then I’ll simply have to see them.

On “The Hideaway” however, we are introduced to a sound largely reminiscent of a country boogie – odd in itself, and entirely misplaced even when contemplating the album’s extremely eclectic nature. The raw and rather unpolished vocal work paves the way for a decent performance and rhythmically there isn’t really much to point fingers at here, nor much to get amazed by. Nonetheless, tracks like these, tracks that seem somewhat misplaced without really being so are what keep this album from achieving an overall sense of coherence and they could therefore be called ‘weaker’ tracks of an otherwise decent album.

Despite occasional detours in the form of tracks like “The Hideaway” there is still plenty of garage-attitude to be found on later tracks like “Business With Pleasure” where the crunchy but sloppy riffing sends my thoughts towards bands like Zap Dragon & The Attack as well as Girl Band – both of which are relatively cool bands in their own right.

In other words I kind of like the sound of “After Party” as I am often reminded of why this particular ‘fuck it, let’s just play’ attitude is right up my alley. Nonetheless I also have a feeling that this album is not really living up to the potential that has been put forward on tracks like the title track. As there are too many detours along the way, the album tends to lose focus and I found myself wondering more than once, that, perhaps King’s Eden should have released this as an EP instead of a full release. Granted, they have come a long way from their previous release (reviewed by PP here on rockfreaks). Anyway, in spite of my own speculations this is still a slightly above average release and I might even find myself digging it out from the depths of my music library again sometime in the future when the mood is just right.

Download: Business With Pleasure, After Party, Grave Digger
For The Fans Of: Baby In Vain, Hole, Anouk

Release Date 07.01.2013

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