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The Kings of Frog Island : The Kings of Frog Island

I've long been a supporter of Germany's Elektrohash label, mainly because of the consistently high quality of their releases combined with their rather diverse take on the meaning of psychedelia. The Kings of Frog Island, led by Josiah front man and former member of The Beginning Mat Bethancourt, may be a one-off, which is exactly what I'm afraid of. Why? Because this album is one of the label's very best, that's why. I know that all too soon I'll be jonesing for more.

TKoFI. is a bright, literate, affectionate take on hard garage psychedelia, emphasizing the psych salad days of the early 70s and the evil drug underground of the early 90s, as represented by the twin idols of Monster Magnet and Kyuss. Yeah, yeah we've seen those names bandied about a thousand times, but never like this. The Kings', while teasing you with halcyon psych riffs you've heard before but can't quite place, have their own program to follow. The album leads off with the mind-blowing garage smackdown of 'Everybody's Gonna Lose their Heads', mixing up early Mudhoney, Blue Cheer, and Monster Magnet in the garage of your dreams. Or nightmares. The mindbending continues with 'The Longest Hour', which is the most badland-oriented tune on the album, a desert sessions midnight monster taking you all the way Homme by means of the Chicago Transit Authority. Strange, but true. 'Leone' is a fragile beauty, like frozen dew melting on a spider web. Have you ever heard of a kaftan? If you (or your parents) have one hanging around, then put it on for 'Slate Blue Sky', a slinky psych/pop venture with plenty o' fuzz. 'Amphibia' is a wah-drenched exercise in stoned dementia, somewhat like the harder Bevis Frond stuff ca. 1992 meets your 70s radio underground faves. Drummer Dodge Watson (sic?) pounds those drums in Corky Lang caveman fashion.

Did I mention that Colour Haze maestro Stefan Koglek is listed as an auxiliary Peace Frog in the liners? Indeed. So it should be no surprise that lovers of The 'Haze (which includes you, doesn't it?) will dig on TKoFI., as well as fans of early Mudhoney, the classic early 70s underground, Bevis Frond, Kyuss, MM., and even Lord Jimi' fer Crissakes! Bethancourt and Co. have got plenty of psychedelic love to spread around, so drop yer linen and start yer grinnin'. Its time to spark up!

Reviewer's rating: Unrated


Tracklist :
1. Everybody's Gonna Lose Their Heads
2. The Longest Hour
3. Leone
4. The River
5. Slate Blue Sky
6. Psychomania
7. Amphibia
8. Save Me
9. Leone (Reprise)

Duration : Approx. 40 minutes

Visit the The Kings of Frog Island bandpage.

Reviewed on ??-??-???? by Keti Tano
Vanha - Black Lion
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