Recently, a really, really good guitarist named Kaki King came to my attention. Originally from Atlanta and now based in Brooklyn, NY, Kaki King first came to prominence about 10 years ago with an experimental, two-handed percussive guitar playing technique.
Over the course of four albums, from her 2003 Velour Recordings debut Everybody Loves You, to three albums later, 2008’s Dreaming of Revenge, she was compared to folks like Michael Hedges and Leo Kottke. She’s recorded with Foo Fighters (on the song “Ballad of The Beaconsfield Miners”), and with The Mountain Goats for their Black Pear Tree EP. She also writes scores for films, and was nominated for a Golden Globe for her score for the 2007 Sean Penn-directed film Into the Wild.
Her guitar playing is indeed impressive, but what sold me is hearing a song like “LoveStoned”, where she tones down the “Guitar God” stuff (Rolling Stone actually did bestow this honor on her some years ago; first female musician to earn the recognition). In this song, she unveils an ethereal voice cloaked in dreamy shoegaze. The juxtaposition of these styles is compelling, and should make for a wonderfully varied live performance.
Her new album Junior, due out on April 13th on Rounder, marks a departure into more accessible singer-songwriter indie pop, though I’m guessing it will still give hints of her guitar prowess.
Also performing at the Middle East with Kaki King will be the Australian duo of An Horse, whom I had the pleasure of seeing back in… October? of last year with Silversun Pickups. Their debut album Rearrange Beds was released last year.
East Coast Dates
4/15 Music Hall of Williamsburg, Brooklyn, NY
4/16 Bowery Ballroom, New York, NY
4/17 The Middle East, Cambridge, MA
4/19 Iron Horse Music Hall, Northampton, MA
4/20 Port City Music Hall, Portland, ME
4/21 Higher Ground, Burlington, VT
4/28 Theatre of Living Arts, Philadelphia, PA
4/29 9:30 Club, Washington, DC