Thursday, March 8, 2012

Third Coast Kings deliver the funk straight up

The Third Coast Kings made their vinyl debut two years back with the release of their Give Me Your Love b/w Tonic Stride seven-inch on Milan's Record Kicks label, and the deep funk scene buzz on this super-tight Ann Arbor eight-piece has been building ever since. No doubt frequent spins from tastemaking DJs Kenny Dope, Ian Wright and Craig Charles helped boost their profile globally.

Their self-titled debut, out March 12, continues the winning Third Coast Kings strategy of building gritty grooves with pounding beats, stinging guitar runs and searing horn blasts. Nothing too daring or overly adventurous here, they just put their heads down and relentlessly grind away.

In retrospect, they would've been wise to take a pacing tip from their Brooklyn counterparts, the Menahan Street Band and added a few slow 'n' moody jams to balance the onslaught of uptempo scorchers – the intermittent vocal features like Spicy Brown (see video below) turn out to be disappointing detours – there's still a solid dose of hard-hustling dancefloor fodder to keep the Meters and JBs fans happy. Why groups like the Third Coast Kings insist on recording with generic belters when there are so many genuinely gifted 60s soul legends waiting to be rediscovered is truly baffling.

Spicy Brown


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