King Krule – “Sublunary”

My goodness, King Krule has GOT to be hiding a 55-year old crooner in his basement, man!

Not the Donkey Kong villain, King Krule is an alias for London twentysomething Archy Marshall, who has been steadily making music under a number of names for the past near-decade. Inspired by genres like R&B, trip and hip-hop, soul, and 2010s weird Youtube and Soundcloud stuff, Krule’s music is fascinating. It’s lo-fi, insular, morose, and liquid, with stripped down instrumentals and minimal yet prominent electronic flourishes. At the center of it is Krule’s ominous and powerful vocals. He sounds ages beyond his 24 years, with a deep and resonant delivery, coming across as some sort of stoned Sinatra. It’s captivating to hear him sing, hell, it’s something just hearing him speak. Kid’s blessed with a golden voice, and he’s been putting in work for a while!

The OOZ is Krule’s second album, his first major work in 4 years, and it’s quite a listen. It’s a dope lounge record, sounding like it came out of a smoky backroom where Krule is backed up by a full band. The OOZ is moody, relaxed, and low-key, often a little mopey too. Krule takes time to let matters marinate, and I get some real Portishead and early Morcheeba vibes sitting with this album. I will admit that Krule lets matters last a little too long, and the album could benefit from some editing and more direction, but it feels like mood music for a rainy evening.

“Sublunary” is another fine example of a track that’s too damn good to be an interlude. It’s romantic, mysterious, and so damn evocative. The sax is phenomenal, the keys set off a feeling of discord, and Krule’s voice rises through the melange, where he takes time to riff on the gooey and calming vibe of the tune. This one is over far too quickly.

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