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Concert Fri Dec 13 2013

King Krule and Tops Take Control of Lincoln Hall

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King Krule (Photos by Cody Davis)

King Krule, the stage name Archy Marshall, may be the most confident 19-year-old you will ever see. Sometimes when such a young artist hits the stage, a few missteps are expected. They possibly may not have enough maturity or experience to fully capture the attention of crowd. This is not the case with King Krule. Having played on Letterman and Conan earlier this year, they have displayed that he and his band can grip an audience quickly and tightly. King Krule took control of the very animated Lincoln Hall crowd and never considered the possibility of losing them.

Tops started of the night with their incredibly danceable pop music. Tops' sound is warm and soft, which is a striking contrast to that King Krule, whose music wallows in deep bass and sharp guitars. They seemed like a bewildering choice to open the show, but after a few notes into their first song they felt like they were the only choice to open. Someone in the crowd yelled out to the band, asking who they were and where they were from, to which Tops guitarist David Carriere responded, "We're you and we are where you're from."

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Tops (Photos by Cody Davis)

The audience was taken by surprise with Tops' witty crowd interaction and fun onstage presence. Lead singer Jane Penny endlessly shuffled in front of her keyboard while her bassist and drummer occasionally took pictures of the Lincoln Hall attendees. They seemed overwhelmed and grateful by the positivity coming from the crowd. During their final song, Carriere hopped on the speakers and fooled around with his guitar before handing it off to an audience member, allowing him to jam with the band. It was a fantastic moment, one that was heralded by everyone at the show.

After the lovely performance from Tops, King Krule quickly took the stage with his band. Marshall maintains an very aloof attitude while on stage. It's not carelessness or disinterest, but rather a deliberate confidence that is inherent in such a talented young person. His band looked equally young and self-assured. Marshall stared coolly at the crowd and growled out his first words of the night, "This is song about myself." Marshall played "Has This Hit" on his pristine white guitar with verifiable ease, strumming down on the chords in a mad dash which caught the audience off guard. King Krule were possessed, completely focused on their instruments as they immediately began playing "Ceiling." King Krule's eclectic influences, like Fela Kuti and Gene Vincent, appear more clearly while they play live than they do on his studio recordings.

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King Krule (Photos by Cody Davis)

King Krule's best moments came when the spot light was placed on Marshall's gravelly voice, which summoned thoughts of Tom Waits. Such was the case with "Cementality," where Marshall took a seat to play the keyboards and let his poetic lyrics and wordplay shine. Marshall let the majority of the songs stand on their own, introducing only a few of them with a sparse sentence always starting with "This song is about..." It made King Krule seem cooler than they already were. Even constant shouts from the crowd identifying Marshall as they're favorite ginger didn't phase him.

However, during the second half of the show King Krule began to mirror the energetic crowd. Marshall was moving around manically during "Rock Bottom," embodying punk rock and nearly knocking down mic stands in the process. "Out Getting Ribs" was performed with such skill that Marshall felt obliged to point it out and congratulate his band. "It was intentional," he joked, providing one of the few moments that saw group outside of their shells. "Easy Easy," King Krule's most identifiable song, had the crowd singing along to every word.

Having just played a phenomenal show, King Krule returned for their encore appearing slightly different. The band was looser and more relaxed than before. Marshall noted how amazing the venue was, his voice pleasantly authentic. "Portrait in Black and Blue" was the only song they played during the encore, but it was more than enough. After heralding the audience member who shredded on the guitar during the Tops set, King Krule departed Lincoln Hall knowing that they had left the crowd completely satisfied.

 
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