The Sunset Kings is a Boston-based group with a uniquely postmodern view of what it means to be an Indie Rock band. Their sound owes as much to the worlds of art, poetry and cinema as it does to Rock & Roll. With beat poet lyricism and musical arrangements that incorporate elements of Jazz, Pop, Psychedelia and Soul, they are redefining what it means to be ‘Alternative.’ It is a sound of simultaneous evolution and entropy, which is fitting for a band experiencing exactly those same natural forces acting on their own existence.
The group debuted in 2018 with the groundbreaking and genre-bending album “The Ballad of Bella Fury.” Immediately they were struck with tragedy upon the unexpected death of their bass player, Shag. That tremendous loss, coupled with the stress of touring effectively ended the 7-piece band. As 2020 dealt a disaster to the world, The Sunset Kings’ lead vocalist (Star) and saxophonist (Neumi) completed their follow-up record while struggling with the impact of the hellish year on their own personal and family lives. The result is the wildly creative and insightful new album, “Shadow Work in Technicolor.”
“Play it Safe” is the latest single from the record, released January 1, 2021. The song packs all of the group’s avant-garde experimental nature into less than two and a half minutes. A simple, jazzy classic Pop chord progression and lo-fi drum groove introduces the song. However, the tape reel soon flips and we find ourselves in an alternate universe version of the same tune.
That melodic guitar groove is still at the heart of the track, but the rhythm is now adorned by syncopated percussive samples and ethereal keys. Meanwhile, Star sings a stream of consciousness meditation on the confusion of love. Images of late night texts, make-up sex and anxiety attacks spin like eddies in the soup. It’s a mesmerizing sound which only grows more surreal as the song progresses. By the end of track we are floating in a psychedelic state of suspension.
Check out “Play it Safe,” below. You can also hear the track on the Deep Indie Dive playlist. Pick up the entire “Shadow Work In Technicolor” record at BandCamp. Follow the links below to connect with The Sunset Kings and get in the know on all of the current and future projects from this exciting group of musicians.