Music

19 year-old mesmerizes with melancholy debut of new album

King Krule – 6 Feet Under the Moon   9.5 out of 10

By Charles Louis Dominguez ’14
THE ROUNDUP

“6 Feet Under the Moon” is nearly perfect.

Archy Marshall, British 19-year-old King Krule, has been releasing music over the Internet since he was 16.

In 2010, under the name Zoo Kid, he started to record music while attending the London School for Performing Arts & Technology—a high school with notable alumni including Amy Winehouse, Adele and Kate Nash.

Marshall has proven his worth by creating some of the most sonically interesting and soulful sounds in recent years.

His appearance as a tall, lanky, red-haired young man often surprises first-time listeners, in contrast to his music—a carefully concocted, mature blend of soul, hip-hop, rockabilly, spoken word and afro-beat.

To say that Marshall is prolific is an understatement that does no justice to the musician.

Although King Krule is his primary project, Marshall also releases music under the names Edgar, the Beatmaker, DJ JD Sports and Lank Slacks. His musical preferences are eclectic, and it’s nearly impossible to classify any of his projects as a certain genre.

King Krule’s music takes lesson from a number of disparate influences such as rockabilly acts like Gene Vincent, hip-hop collectives like Slum Village and the Beastie Boys, afro-beat musician Fela Kuti and the Penguin Café Orchestra musical group.

His impressive musicianship and youth have caught the attention of the music scene.

Marshall’s debut album, “6 Feet Under the Moon,” finds him in his best crooner-form.

It immediately draws the listener in with its opening track, “Easy Easy,” a danceable tune with a guitar riff that Gene Vincent would envy.

The rest of the album flows along just as well, offering an excellent soundtrack to the disillusionment of youth.

“I like being young because it gives you more to work against,” Marshall said in an interview on Interviewmagazine.com.

Statements like this lead to the prevalence of youth in the album’s overall theme.

Since most of the songs have been recorded throughout Marshall’s life, “6 Feet Beneath the Moon” is essentially a young man’s life illustrated musically. Marshall even intentionally released the album on his 19th birthday.

“6 Feet Under the Moon” comes across as an important album, if only for the way it chooses to depict youth.

My lone gripe with the album is that a handful of the tracks were previously released when Marshall still went by the name Zoo Kid.

Re-recorded, “A Lizard State,” the album’s eighth track, sees vast improvement with the addition of a blaring saxophone. However, other tracks like “Baby Blue” lose out to their original versions.

When he was asked about his reasons behind changing his name from Zoo Kid in an interview with The Guardian, Marshall said that he’s “ready to go from being a kid to being a king.”

If “6 Feet Under the Moon” is any indication of what the future holds for 19-year-old Marshall, then all hail the king.