I hate to be this topical, but King Krule’s Dum Surfer sounds like a fucking hurricane.
The song starts off in an uneasy lull. It sounds like a King Krule song, but why’s it buried so deep in the mix? And, what’s with this churning background noise?
Soon enough it all falls into tumbling chaos, and more questions arise: where are the jazz chords? What has Archy done to his voice? It’s all very confusing on the first dive; there’s sparse drumbeats, some deep-screwed version of Archy Marshall booming like Poseidon and not much else.
But about a minute in, those homely jazz chords descend out of the maelstrom like rescue copters, only to fuse back into the storm again just as quickly. By the time he gains enough solid footing to let out a spidery buzz saw solo over those woozy diminisheds, he starts throwing in enough tenor sax runs and pipe organ flutters to leave you feeling adrift once again.
The lyrics talk of catastrophic failure–cab crashes, train crashes, crashing onto the pavement after drinking too much to calm your nerves. Archy supposedly spent a lot of time and effort pursuing a girl from Spain while he was writing these songs, and that frustration of realizing you’ve wasted your time comes through overwhelmingly.
So when the song drops into a battered island groove, it’s almost as confusing. You thought you could just weather out this song, but it’s got some movement to it now. It’s still ominous, yeah, but it makes you want to shake something made out of bones.
With every re-listen, it starts to feel like the song has been hiding this relaxed heart the whole time, but Archy couldn’t let it out into the open right away. It’s an amazing song, and I have no other way to describe it than storm-like.
If this release and the astral lounge of King Krule’s other single “Czech One” are any indication, The Ooz should be one hell of a ride.