Something Else! sneak peek: King Mob, "Selene Selene" (2011)

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The new English beat combo King Mob comes tearing out on “Selene Selene,” quickly rejoining the fender-bending journey started during their previous tenures with the Sex Pistols, the Pretenders and the Sharks.

Even though “Selene Selene” sounds, on its surface, like a high-speed collision between a rockabilly hoopty and a punk-rock motorcycle, the track is far more than the sum of its greasy, reverb-rattling parts. In fact, so starkly hurtful is the cry for this woman, so crashingly sinister is the Diddley beat, it might have made a great blues shout in another era.

Of course, it’s far, far too loud for something so mid-century as that — and that makes perfect sense, when you look deeper into King Mob’s roots.

The group is led by guitarist Chris Spedding, a respected sessions guitarist who served as producer of the Sex Pistols first demos, recorded in May 1976 with King Mob bassist Glen Matlock. Drummer Martin Chambers was a founding member of the Pretenders. King Mob is rounded out by vocalist Stephen (Snips) Parsons, with whom Spedding played in the lost 1970s post-punk band the Sharks, and a new guitar talent simply called Sixteen. Spedding is perhaps most famous for later work with Harry Nilsson (Nilsson Schmilsson), Brian Eno (Here Come the Warm Jets), Elton John (Madman Across the Water), Tom Waits (Rain Dogs), Paul McCartney (Give Me Regards to Broadstreet), among many others. He’s also worked with Roxy Music and John Cale.

Together, they place King Mob’s collective steel-toe boot squarely on the gas pedal — and keep it there, all the way until the point of impact. “Selene Selene” comes crashing down in a grinding, spark-throwing tangle of metal and emotion. If this advance track is any indication, King Mob’s forthcoming Force 9 long-player is going to be as hard to turn away from as your average road-side wreck — but a lot more fun.

“Selene, Selene” is available now as a free download through Amazon. SPV/Steamhammer will issue Force 9, recorded in just four days, on Oct. 31, 2011 as an 11-track CD and and also as a 7-song, 180g vinyl LP with gatefold sleeve. King Mob will then play an exclusive one-off headline show at London’s 229 The Venue, Great Portland Street on Nov. 17, 2011 with special guests the Bermondsey Joyriders. For tickets, go to www.229thevenue.co.uk.

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Nick DeRiso

Nick DeRiso

Nick DeRiso has written for USA Today, American Songwriter, All About Jazz, and a host of others. Honored as columnist of the year five times by the Associated Press, Louisiana Press Association and Louisiana Sports Writers Association, he oversaw a daily section named Top 10 in the U.S. by the AP before co-founding Something Else! Nick is now associate editor of Ultimate Classic Rock.
Nick DeRiso
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