British rock band, Free were a bunch of misfit rockers when they made their debut “Tons of Sobs” in 1968; an album that really set the bar for glam metal in its easy onslaught of distorted guitars and lyrics with a wearied attitude. Although Free was never destined to scrape the same skies as Led Zeppelin but when they first burst out of the traps in 1968, close to a year ahead of Jimmy Page and company, they set the world of British blues-rock firmly on its head. The band was a blistering combination of youth and ambition. Despite those tender years and the lack of experience the course of their debut album did indeed lay the groundwork for all that Zeppelin would embrace. The fact that Free and Zeppelin were cut from the same cloth is immediately apparent; even before you start comparing both bands’ debut albums. Nonetheless Free streaked ahead in their refusal to compromise their own vision of the blues.
When I first became aware of British blues- rockers, King King in one listen it came on and I thought to myself, ‘God, what is this?’. I’d never really heard anybody sing like this before and despite all the music I listen to there was something about it that pulled me in.I have no idea why, but it was just one of those albums that just stayed with me…over and over and over again.
King King’s last album..“Exile & Grace” was drenched in melancholy, soul and even tinges of southern boogie. Hard driving powerful blues with a prominent bass line, explosive drum fills and rich heartfelt vocals, all topped off with unique ‘crying’ guitar work. It’s blues-rock painted in stark black & white mirrored by a deliberate wallop from their rhythm section.
They have just “dropped” a new track, “I Will Not Fall” which could very well become a dirty classic that just leaps out of the speakers and grabs you by the throat. The song struts along throughout its entirety. King King has widened their sonic horizon without losing any of its auricular muscle; making sure that at its core it’s a surefire rock and roll song… Thematically its about when getting knocked down to the ground by the world and finding the strength to perceiver and rise up. I’m optimistic that singer, Alan Nimmo.. and company are developing a slightly different sound that is much fuller and confident than their earlier works; and for the first time he produced the record. They’re an exceptional group of musicians and they are just getting better.
In a previous interview, Nimmo explained the reasons for the changes in band members and attitude.. “I reached a stage where I felt that I wanted to regain control of my life, career and future,” says Alan Nimmo,“I made a number of changes within the band and people surrounding the band. That was a lot of changes at one time. It was a daunting feeling, but they were important decisions that had to be made.“Making these kind of decisions leaves you feeling slightly worried about whether or not you’re doing what’s right and what’s best for, not only myself personally, but also what is in the best interest for King King. I decided to try and be more proactive. One of the first things I did was start up my own record label and surround myself with the right people who can take King King to the next level. It’s refreshing to have people at our side who have a genuine belief in the band and what we’re capable of achieving.”
If you are a fan of Paul Rogers ..Bad Company and Free then you’re in store for a real treat. King King are planning a full U.K. tour..
A big thanks to the great Peter Noble…
Photo Credit: © Graham Milne