September 27, 2013

His inconspicuous exterior lays claim to a booming, guttural vocal that has played a part in creating the ‘dark wave’ genre.

At 19 years old KING KRULE AKA Archy Marshall is a walking juxtaposition. His inconspicuous exterior lays claim to a booming, guttural vocal that has played a part in creating the ‘dark wave’ genre. Marshall recorded his first song at the age of 8, attended the Brit School as a young teenager before collaborating with MOUNT KIMBIE, a decision which has set the bar high for his debut album 6 Feet Beneath the Moon. Thankfully, he delivers.

The fourteen-track album begins with Easy. Tesco, dead end jobs and scolding mothers are just a few subjects covered as Marshall rolls out the word ‘easy’, like thunder. It sets the precedence for the rest of the album and embodies Marshall’s resolution ‘to not give a shit about the establishment’ expressed through fierce vocals, drunk bass guitar and reverb. Marshall’s stony baritone and fuck the establishment narratives hark back to Joe Strummer and establish a punk vibe that’s present throughout the album, but Marshall by no means limits himself to one genre.

6 Feet Beneath the Moon is a demonstration of Marshall’s musical prowess. He’s peacocking. With each different track he exhibits a different musical feather. Take Baby Blue for example. It echo’s a crooning Sinatra, “My sandpaper sight engraves a line into the rust of your tongue, girl I could have bin someone” channelling a voice and subject matter way beyond his years. Baby Blue shows Marshall’s ability to create a more delicate sound as his pretty guitar riffs diffuse through his dulcet vocals and, although at points throughout the album his lyrics are called into question when he occasionally runs into clichés, Marshall’s penmanship on Baby Blue puts any doubts in his lyricism to rest.

6 Feet Beneath The Moon is utilitarian concrete blocks and broken bikes. It’s fresh grazes and bruised bones spoken from the perspective of somebody who’s been there. The album is an exploration of Marshall’s past and it’s urban soundscape maps Marshall’s short life down to an uncomfortable level of detail citing disappointment, suicide and broken hearts to name a few. The catches and glitches of Marshall’s voice, ethereal drum loops and rich chords allow us a rare insight into the brain of a boy whose only light at the end of the tunnel came from music. It’s an album that reveals itself slowly, unfurling a little more with each listen to disclose a raw marvel and it’s definitely worth your time.

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