Pitchfork Music Festival 2012, live review | King Krule
Pitchfork Festival is one of the worst places for those undergoing a crisis of aging. In your 30s? Want to feel like your grandfather? Stand in the middle of the crowd for araabMUZIK, Youth Lagoon, et al. Oddly, the youngest musicians playing this thing sounded the most old fashioned. King Krule, the nom de Bandcamp of 18ish Brit kid Archy Marshall, looks like an orphan of the Thin White Duke, and the young prodigies backing him had parents who splurged on jazz lessons. His sparse working-class tunes took on a not-unwelcome lounge-act air. It was the kind of band you'd expect to find tucked in the back of a pub—if they could get into one.
Marshall took his stage name from a Donkey Kong character, but the redhead's tastes predate home video gaming. His swinging Cockney punk-wop is aiming for Billy Bragg and early Elvis Costello, but all I'm hearing is a sober Babyshambles. Is this what jam bands sound like in the East End? He sings like a seal in a Guy Ritchie movie. The only line I could make out was the opening shot from "Out Getting Ribs"—"Hate runs through my blood." It's a voice only Kate Moss could love. His pen bleeds hormones. Still, out of all the not-ready-for-prime-time acts at Pitchfork, here was the one I could see amounting to something in five, ten years.
The teenager just hasn't quite figured it out yet. Go figure.