Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part of our Song of the Day podcast subscription. This podcast features exclusive KEXP in-studio performances, unreleased songs, and recordings from independent artists that our DJs think you should hear. Each and every Friday we offer songs by local artists. Today’s selection, featured on the Morning Show with John Richards, is the title track of the latest album by The King Khan & BBQ Show, Invisible Girl, on In The Red Records.
Surely, you’ve heard of The King Khan and the BBQ Show, right? Maybe you saw them at Chop Suey that one time last year with The Dutchess and the Duke (incidentally, why is “duchess” spelled that way? If you know please help Kate and I sleep at night)? They’re from Montreal and Quebec, eh? Maybe you just saw them at that same venue a coupla weeks ago? I missed it this time around. Were they awesome? You know, I have to be honest: they didn’t exactly melt my face when I saw them but I’ll tell you what, the more I listen to them the more I like ‘em. I’m not much for schlochy-costumey blahbitty-blah so the Cleopatra wig, hipster belly and sultan get-up are more or less lost on me. That being said, the guitar and sound of this duo sort of rips. Relatively undeniable — when you close your eyes, forget about the BS and hear those guitars — and remember that someone is playing guitar AND drums at the same time. Awesomeness, right? And PS, it tears even more after a beer or two, which is where I’m at tonight and in my best estimation that’s exactly where King Khan (formerly BlackSnake in The Spaceshits) and Mark Sultan (AKA the BBQ, formerly of The Spaceshits, Les Sexareenos) would prefer me whilst digesting their music.
King Khan and the BBQ sorta reminds me of this Rambo knife I wanted as a kid (Mom said no, waaaah): serrated on one side for sawing through bones (think Black Flag, noisier VU, The Sonics)/ smooth and sharp on the other for neatly cauterizing wounds (think Sam Cooke meets Chuck Berry)… “Invisible Girl,” the title track of the band’s latest release (on In the Red Records) is a fine example of what KK&BBQ can do when they put on the mr. sensitive pants. With jangly guitar and a super feel-good rhythm, this song makes my ass want to cruise Arnold’s drive-in, say what’s up to Chachi and kick the jukebox. Khan’s voice is gruff but softened nicely by Sultan’s more soothing overlay. Top it off with some buzzer-beating ghostly harmonies and, well, goddamn you’ve got yourself another song stuck in your cute little skull. No costumes… no costumes… no costumes… DAMN THIS SHIT IS SOUNDING PRETTY GAHL-DARN GOOD.
The King Khan and BBQ Show are just about to wrap up a massive North American tour, but if the past year is any indication, you’re sure to get another chance to see KK&BBQ in the near future. Until then, keep up on their MySpace page. For now, enjoy this video of fan favorite “Why Don’t You Lie”: