Kings & Daughters – “The Lion” EP


Kings&Daughters-THE_LION_EPcoverRarely when looking at band’s info on Facebook or wherever do you come across something that accurately sums up what a band is all about.  Kings & Daughters are one exception to that rule.  From their Biography section on Facebook:

If you’re looking for the next big thing, this ain’t it. If you’re looking for something that’s going to redefine a genre, you’ve come to the wrong place. If you’re looking for someone to tell you what to believe and how to believe it, we suggest you move on. We are just two lone wolves without a wolf pack and the two best friends that anyone could have. We are Kings & Daughters.

Kings & Daughters is essentially a two-man project of “best friends” Carlos Salazar and Trent Gibson who were both previously in Before There Was Rosalyn.  In their words, they set out to make “honest music “ and from the start planned to give it away, which poses some obvious issues from a record label viewpoint.  Up and coming hardcore label On the Attack Records singed them to a distribution deal  where they will press a limited amount of physical copies of the album, which are available for sale and on December 4th, HM Magazine will host the free online distribution of the ep.

Although through their own description, one clearly gets the idea that this music won’t be the next big thing or redefine genres, it has heart and passion behind it which is something sorely lacking in a lot music today.  Vocals in all the songs border on the edge of being out of control, drums slowly pound or roll like a freight train, and guitars start and stop and lurch about in a all sorts of crazy riffs.  From a style perspective, one can’t help but be reminded of old Norma Jean and Chariot.  That’s what we’re talking about here.  Pretty much pummeling organized chaos with all sorts of crazy starts and stops with some melodic sections thrown in and some sections that could be characterized as breakdowns.

The ep opens up with one of the best opening songs I’ve heard in a long time.  “The Rampant: A Sung Farewell” explodes with drums and raked guitar alternating with chords and then a fast melodic section that leads into the breakdown-like parts before shifting back into faster melodic sections and then throw in some more starts/stops with one the edge vocals being screamed over the top of it and you get an idea of what will happen on this album.  Those of us who have seen bands like this live can instantly picture what this would look like live.  Lots of sweat, guitar players running into each other and crashing about on stage, a drummer who spends much of the night as a blur, and a singer who looks like he’s near death by exhaustion at the end of the show.

One thing I certainly appreciate in this album is the relative lack of clean vocals as I have my own set of issues with them in this genre as they never seem to quite fit.  The other part I found interesting is that there are sections in the songs that could be classified as breakdowns but they’re handled a bit differently than most bands.  “The Salient: A Ravaging Beast” provides some good examples of what I’m trying to explain.  In some “breakdown” sections, the vocals continue unabated over the top which “breaks up” the breakdown and in another section, the bass guitar line continues through what would be a breakdown, tying things together.

You don’t have to be a fan of the genre to appreciate this ep.  “No image, no hype, just rock and roll” is a quote in the press release for The Lion ep and really that sums it up perfectly.  Kings & Daughters hit their mark, giving us a debut ep with powerful vocals, loud guitars, pummeling drums, melody and chaos done with passion and heart.

Rating: 7.5/10

1. The Rampant: A Sung Farewell
2. The Pharoah: A False Idol
3. The Salient: A Ravaging Beast (featuring Shane Raymond, ex Close Your Eyes)
4. The Sphinx: A Graven Image
5. Of Judah: A Man Alive (featuring Blake Williams of Concepts)

Band Members:
Trent Gibson – Guitar
Carlos – Salazar – Vocals
Andrew Burke – Guitar

Record Label: On the Attack Records, Dec. 2013

Weblinks: Facebook / Bandcamp (Free track, “Of Judah: A Man Alive”)

Buy the album here:
Holland: First Paradox
Norway: Nordic Mission
USA: Metal Helm

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