Ian P. Badtrousers

Man Alive!

“Why stop reading when the page is about to turn?

Three years into the sublime bright of OOZ, we couldn’t know what to expect from the King this time around. Dirty, sensual, merciless jazz? Grime?! A bit of this, a little bit of that? Everything that could be said on this subject has already been said, it seems. The previous album taught us the story of a fresh, yet strangely familiar new sound; sound you won’t ever hear while breakstroking along the course of stream. Naturally, to hear this sound in bypass to the King himself, one would have to submerge into a very similar void, akin to one surrounding the deep sea diver who’s got nothing to lose.

Regardless the amount of oxygen left in-between a single inhalation and the one following it, the diver, in fact, has quite a lot to lose. From the infinitely high airy view of the all–hearing listener, this was always only a question of time: when exactly will the King come to terms with this cruel reality?

Archie holds the most rusty of all knives and begins the procedure by making a surgically precise cut, when he immediately proceeds to make a negligent slash. The pain does not bring any further understanding, not a single novel emotion, no original thought, but in the meantime, something much bigger than that emerges—a newborn princess Marina. Completely overwhelmed and bewildered by the force of nature, King drops the knife and gets back to his beloved guitar.

Fast-forward to now, we receive something new. Permamently perplexed, confused, and absolutely disoriented collage of an album that begins, continues, and ends in egoistical self–pity: one of the few things Archie does best. The deap sea diver from the previous album is still deep underwater, but one gets the impression the constant impedance of depth finally brings fear upon him, for real. To the familiar sounds of emptiness, even moreso familiar feelings of dread and cowardice has been added. Unfortunately, their totality leaves no space for any kind of narrative.

Favourite, No.3 Stoned Again surprised me in a deep, unexpected way:

— 8.2 / 10

Published: Friday, 21 Feb 2020

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