Published Sep 19, 2014Kyle Thomas' King Tuff returns fiercer than ever with his take on psychedelia and classic rock, with generous doses of headbanging, humour and sentimentality. Black Moon Spell is an impressively diverse album, from the ballad "Staircase of Diamonds" and slick greaser tune "Eddie's Song" to the pared down acoustic "Ugly" and Ramones-y "Sick Mind."
Tuff's world is coloured with entertaining anecdotes delivered via skeezy vocals, from the "Demon from Hell" that vomits acid on his shoes, to the retro ray-gun sound effect on "Black Holes in the Stereo" that perfectly sets the scene for teenaged Tuff to learn more at the record store than in class.
The tone may be casual, but there's no slacking here. Though sincere, Tuff also does a seriously good job of not taking himself too seriously. In "Rainbows Run," the clichéd hippie dude may "Bathe you in [his] burning love," but this caricature is fleshed out with crisper, more modern guitar sounds, and much like on the album's Sabbath-riffed title track, jammy, overextended wanking is kept to a minimum.
While King Tuff has skilfully honed his '70s shtick here, Black Moon's appeal reaches deeper, transcending the novelty with well-written tunes that are fun even for those impartial to the decade.
Read our recent interview with King Tuff here.
UPDATE: This stream was available for one week only and is no longer available. (Sub Pop)