Moon King at The Musician

Moon King at the Musician Photo: Keith Jobey

19th May 2015

Magic Teapot Promotions presents

Moon King

at The Musician

Review by Keith Jobey

Canada, despite its crimes against the music world, produces some excellent underground music. And occasionally, when we’re lucky, some of those underground bands emerge in Britain. And when we’re very lucky, they even make it to Leicester. In reality it’s not down to luck, it is thanks to the hard work of local promoters singling out such bands and doing their best to get them to come play in our town, which to be fair, is off the main touring route. Magic Teapot was tonight’s promoter, the Musician was the venue, Moon King were our Canadian visitors.

Collossloth have been appearing regularly as an opening act lately. This one man and his device noisemaker could almost pass for a soundman while crouched down on the stage he starts fiddling with the tools of his trade. But then the soundscape develops and you realise the show has begun. At times it’s thunderous, at other times delicate and more often it’s industrial. It’s an interesting 20 minutes.

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I’d read about Aztec Temples in the pages of this publication where they are band of the month for May 2015. Good going for a band who’s first gig was in February of this year. You can read all about them here.

Aztec Temples at The Musician Photo: Keith Jobey
Aztec Temples at The Musician
Photo: Keith Jobey

Tonight they showed no sign of being a fresh new band, their playing was competent and assured. It varied from some semi-acoustic songs to far more powerful rock influenced ones. I heard traces of Elastica and the Red Hot Chillis amongst the more frequent Oasis grounded sounds. A bit more development and a little more animation on stage and they should mature nicely.

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Ash Mammal at The Musician Photo: Keith Jobey
Ash Mammal at The Musician
Photo: Keith Jobey

Ash Mammal couldn’t be more animated on stage. From the beginning to the end it’s a blurred flurry of flurried blurriness. There’s the usual role swapping, this time Dan taking on bass guitar duties while Jeeves Kanth took the vocals. Come the closing song the animated antics got the better of them as Dan, bearing a passing resemblance tonight to the image of Kurt Cobain featured on the Musician wall, falls into the drum kit in a Nirvana-esque moment. Brilliant stuff from one of Leicester’s most original bands.

Ash Mammal at The Musician Photo: Keith Jobey
Ash Mammal at The Musician
Photo: Keith Jobey

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So to Moon King. All the way from Toronto. Arriving in Leicester after playing the Great Escape Festival in Brighton and carrying with them a box full of their debut album Secret Life.

Moon King at the Musician Photo: Keith Jobey
Moon King at the Musician
Photo: Keith Jobey

Normally they consist of Daniel Benjamin and Maddy Wilde, but on stage they are filled out with the addition of a drummer and extra guitarist, meaning at times we get three guitars buzz-sawing away together over the electronic beats. Other times we hear Daniel and Maddy sharing vocals, harmonising like they’ve been doing it all their lives. Killer tracks from the album Roswell and Apocalypse are highlights and there’s a nod to David Attenborough from Daniel, who we hear is a hero of his and he’s pleased to be playing in the city he grew up in. At the end the small crowd make enough noise to tempt Daniel back out to so a solo encore and then it’s off to the merch stand to sell and sign.

Moon King at the Musician Photo: Keith Jobey
Moon King at the Musician
Photo: Keith Jobey

Despite the excitement and enjoyment had on the night, the sad fact of the matter is that there were only a dozen or so paying punters in the venue. So here’s a small plea. When you see a band listed you’ve not heard of go check them out. Read the bio, give them a listen (even if it’s 20 seconds). And perhaps, go and see the show. I’d hadn’t heard of Moon King prior to Magic Teapot booking them and now I have their album and have had the pleasure of catching their live show. And it’s a show I would have regretted missing.

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See also:

Photos from the 2015 OBS finals

The reunion gig of The Heroes

The Soundhouse on May 15

About The Editor 535 Articles
The Editor of Music in Leicester magazine is Kevin Gaughan.