Kings Of Frog Island
Crank this to 9.5 of 11
| Editor's Pick
Stoner rock, Psychedelic rock
Queens of the Stoneage, Monster Magnet, Temple of the Dog
We have been on a Kings of Frog Island binge lately. Having the first three albums on heavy rotation for a good month or so, be it on the running trail, in the shower, on the way to work, or just subtly playing in the background while eating dinner with the families. Ultimately our tendency is to gravitate more to III as opposed to the first two albums. We have yet to give IV our full attention. This gravitation is primarily due to the fact that III flows so goddam well. There are quite a few similarities between this album and QOTSA’s debut self-titled album in 1998 during the first 15 minutes, but the album morphs into a very psychedelic feel thereafter. Frankly the tracks never tire and develop a stronger life with ever rotation. The chemistry on this album is wonderful.
Kings of Frog Island were formed in England back in 2003. In 2010, the band broke up and split into two other bands worth your attention (Cherry Choke and Bull Dog).
1. In Memoriam
2. Glebe Street Whores
3. Bride Of Suicide
4. Dark On You
5. The Keeper Of…
6. More Than I Should Know
7. Ode To Baby Jane
8. I Ain't Sorry
9. A Cruel Wind Blows
10. Gallowtree Gate
The opener, has a Pink Floyd the Wall effect with its militant name announcements and adrenaline filled percussion. Enter, "Glebe" perhaps the "Mexicola" of III, an absolutely stellar track with the perfect amount of vocal distortion and opening of the skies moments. "Bride of Suicide" delivers a tremendous intro of swirling guitars and build-up that will illicit thoughts of Kyuss and the new John Garcia album (better than Vista Chino by the way). Patient vocals and contrast really send chills throughout. "Dark on You" is perhaps an ode to Temple of the Dog or Chris Cornell’s solo career. Very melodic and you have to give a double take at times to question whether or not this is Chris doing a guest spot on III. “The Keeper of…” bleeds Colour Haze and old Monster Magnet as the band delves into more experimental depths here. A boatload of feedback and tambourine make for an interesting trip.
“More Than I Should Know” is perhaps the most jovial and uplifting track off the album. Great guitar-work and a bass line of epic proportions. A very nice little ditty. “Ode to Baby Jane” delivers a very steady 60s vibe as the maraca rhythms reigns. “I Ain’t Sorry” provides a little southern twang and channels Josh Homme. The offbeat and counter-intuitive melodies drive home a more modern QOTSA feel. “A Cruel Wind Blows” provides some lovely acoustics along with what appears a new vocalist. This track really adds to the diversity of the album. Lyrically a very dark and intriguing track. The closing track “Gallowtree Gate” reconnects the opening track with its marching percussion. Betancourt’s vocals are absolutely stunning on this track. Sensational ending.
Mat Bethancourt (vocals, guitars, bass, percussion)
R. "Dodge" Watson (drums, percussion)
Mark Bruteux (guitars, bass)
Gavin Searle (vocals, synths)
Gavin Hunt (bass)
The Kings of Frog Island have flown way the fuck under the radar for way too long. Lets celebrate the talent of these bastards and reveille in their achievements. III is a majestic ride that does pull in several very apparent influences, making for a strong editors pick. We look forward to putting IV in rotation. Certainly check-out the earlier two projects. Very diverse stuff, delivering some Monster Magnet trippiness to Sheavy classic stoner rock. - 12/1/2015
Standout Tracks: The Keeper Of…, Gallowtree Gate, Bride of Suicide