# A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

King Blues - Under The Fog

  by Alex Halls

published: 20 / 8 / 2006

King Blues - Under The Fog
Label: Select Label
Format: CD


Politically hard leftwing debut album from new London band the King Blues, which proves to be an intriguing mix of reggae, ska and punk rock

Appropriately named, 'Under the Fog' refers to the veil that governments place over our eyes. Looking past the rhetoric, the King Blues' debut album is an intriguing mix of reggae, ska and punk rock straight from the heart of London. Consisting of two acoustic guitars, an acoustic bass and a ukulele the band is made up of: Johnny Fox (ukulele/vocals); Jamie Jazz (guitar/vocals); Chris (bass/vocals); and Fruitbag (guitar/vocals/keyboard). 'Under the Fog' opens with an anti-war message: a message that is repeated in following track, 'Blood on my Hands', which highlights Britain’s policy of economy over human life. This opener, a predominantly instrumental track sparks off intense interest in the remaining tracks, and with good reason as the album lights up with political dissension overlaying catchy tunes. Although switches from one track to the next are not as fluid as one might have expected the quality of each following track quickly forgives this. 'Under the Fog' is, essentially, calling for revolutionary action and manifested in a poignant line in 'The Sound of Revolt': “I may not be Guy Fawkes, but I’ll always be a thorn in your paws’. Whilst a revolution may currently be a mere desire, 'Under the Fog' vividly portrays a country that has forgotten how to care for its people, raising individual’s awareness of social issues. It is here that it follows in the footsteps of Billy Bragg, speaking out against racism in 'Coming Fi Di Youth,' which derogates the BNP’s attempt to recruit the youth, and then observing the disparity between today’s youth and the youth of previous generations. Using only acoustic instruments, the band are able to emphatically make their point, drawing the sounds together to form a range of catchy tunes. The effectiveness of 'Under the Fog' is the King Blues ability to draw on older styles of music but to do so in a way that makes them delectably contemporary. The vocals range from the typical ska sounding tobacco-edged, to a cleaner mix, depending on the style of song. With the track, 'Mr Music Man', having featured on Radio 1 and te King Blues playing both Reading and Leeds as well as the Wasted festival, not to mention a recent interview in 'Kerrang', the band seem to be on an upward spiral. With an album this good, it’s only right. On the one hand, more work could have gone into aligning the songs so that tracks flowed better. On the other, given the accurate political observations, who cares! The King Blues grasp their political views but, rather than shoving them down your throat, they send them into you via a puff of the green stuff. It’s this approach that makes 'Under the Fog' momentous. It’s effective as a chillout summer album, whilst appealing to those with a political agenda: separated, they’re great, but combined, they’re sublime.

Track Listing:-
1 Intro
2 Blood On My Hands
3 We Ain't Never Done
4 Mr Music Man
5 Come Fi Di Youth
6 The Sound Of Revolt
7 If I Had A Coin...
8 Chimp In A 3 Piece Suit
9 Duck And Cover
10 Taking Over
11 Getting Out Of Here

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