Welsh five-piece King Kraken release their debut album on the 27th of January and for a band’s first major release this is unbelievable, their sound is awesome and they are so tight it just defies logic that this is their first offering.
The opening refrains of “Devil’s Night” tell you that you are in for a wild ride, a relentless drum and bass beat with monster riffs underscore the band’s power, Donoghue’s gravelly vocals are immense and only get better as the album progresses. “Bastard Liar” has a faster more thrashy feel, coming out of the traps like a freight train it hits right between the eyes, there are shades of Machine Head and even Slayer-style riffs that make this track a banger and one of the best in here and as for Donoghue’s vocals; take it to another level. “Green Terror” and “Veins” change things up a bit with a more groove-heavy vibe, a lá Pantera with a Corrosion Of Conformity twist, managing to keep the power and heaviness, “Green Terror” has crunching riffs with a thumping drum beat and a mega solo while “Veins” has a killer funky beat and is faster, combined with Donoghue spitting out the lyrics like nobody’s business this is guaranteed to get you moving, a cracking solo at the backend of the track is the icing on top.
“Haddonfield 78” comes in really heavy with chugging riffs, a banging drum beat and a rumbling bass line, Donoghue’s vocals are very reminiscent of Randy Blythe and the verse midway through has a definite Lamb Of God feel and that is no bad thing, another savage solo from Healy gives the track that little extra spice. “Man-Made Monster” steals the show for me; the intense interplay between the drums and guitars kicks the tempo big time while Donoghue runs the vocal range showcasing his obvious talent and a robust set of lungs, Healy’s solo is masterful considering all the chaos going on around him, track of the album. “Walls Of Jericho” is another heavy groovers that go up and down like a rollercoaster from the slow grinding opening to the uptempo midsection and backs down again at the end of the track all the while sandwiched in between some massive riffs and a couple of tasty solos, great vocals once again, a true headbanging track. “Proctors Ledge” is a stoner’s dream; down tuned long drawn out riffs and buzzing bass make this one heavy badass track, the tempo picks up midway through and it gives you more of a hard rock feel with an absolute scorcher of a solo from Healy before it drops back down to the sludgy stoner groove that plays the track out to a close. “Chaos Engine” is a heavy metal banger if ever there was, full throttle and in your face with punchy drums and chugging riffs that will melt your brain, Donoghue’s vocals are off the hook as he roars his way through the track, this pushes “Man-Made Monster” for track of the album. “Castle Of Bone” brings proceedings to a close in much the same way as it started with a massive wall of sound, kicking rhythm and a round groove monster, there is not much more that needs saying, a beast of a track.
The production along with the content on this album is outstanding and it has to be a contender for album of the year even if it is only January.
TRACKLIST: 1. Devils Night
2. Bastard Liar
3. Green Terror
5. Haddonfield ’78
6. Man Made Monster
7. Walls of Jericho
8. Proctors Ledge
9. Chaos Engine
10. Castle of Bone
LIVE DATES: 03 Dec – BRADFORD, Nightrain (w/ Monster Truck)
10 Dec – MERTHYR, The Redhouse
28 Jan – MERTHYR, The Redhouse (album launch party)
25 Feb – QUEENSFERRY, PentreFest
30 Apr – SWANSEA, Hanger 18 (Station 18 Festival)
28 May – LINCOLN, Call of the Wild Festival
28 Oct – CANNOCK, Shark Fest (The Station)
King Kraken is:
Mark Donoghue – Vocals Peter Rose – Rhythm guitar / Backing vocals
Adam Healey – Lead Guitar
Karl Meyer – Bass
Richard Lee Mears – Drums