King Dude - Love digi-CD
To put it simply, King Dude’s Love may be one of the first truly American neofolk albums. Too often entrenched in the trappings of traditional English folk, neofolk artists have lived in the shadow of Death in June, Sol Invictus, Current 93, and the other monoliths of the genre for far too long. Undergoing a bit of a renaissance, artists such as Cult of Youth, Waldteufel, and Skurv are taking neofolk and twisting it into their own craven images. Influenced by tropicalia, punk, black metal, and anything else that may cross their ears, theres a generative spirit in all of these bands (and many more) that’s breathing life back into a genre that seemed to be dying with the retirement of the old guard. In the case of King Dude ( TJ Cowgill of Book of Black Earth, and creator of the brand Actual Pain), Love plays out like a Smithsonian Folkway recorded at an Appalachian Satanic commune. Dais records cites Woodie Guthrie and Johnny Cash as two prime influences on this record, but after a few listens it’s clear that his record is a paean to the apocalyptic spirit that inhabits the dark corners of this countries traditional music. There’s murder ballads, love songs to ghosts, spirituals about lucifer; though Cowgill hails from the rainsoaked Pacific Northwest, Love feels like a journey around the frost rimed back roads of all this countries forgotten towns.