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Kingdom: KingdomKingdom (2006)
Goodbye Blue Skies
Reviewer Rating: 2
Contributed by: AnchorsAnchors
(others by this writer | submit your own)
Those who stand for nothing, fall for anything.- Alexander Hamilton
Though that quote has been bastardized and misused in yearbooks and MySpace profiles across the country, itís still a very powerful thing to think about, and itís something that applies to a lot of the more socially and politically-minded punk bands of the day than some may realize. Itís an easy thing to have beliefs, but to have convictions is another thing entirely.
Kingdom certainly have convictions, and the subject of those is going to divide everyone whoís able to get past the singer's unseasoned snarls. The subject at hand is veganism, and itís one that the song ďBathoryĒ shows is as important as anything to this four-piece:
In a moment I was forever changed, when I made an oath that no life / Would be taken in my name, our claims of natural / Reveal themselves as criminal, so I commit to compassion / Will you answer this call for action?Leaving no room for fence-sitting, Kingdom is able to provocatively have anyone listening question their own beliefs, myself included. As somebody whoís never even considered veganism, the fact that those words were able to make me think about the reasons I eat meat is a testament unto themselves. I know itís a subject thatís likely to turn a lot of people off, but itís something that canít hurt to think about. So itís not the message that turns me off of Kingdom -- itís the music.
The punchy vocals and repetitive chord structures grow tiresome quickly, and all the youthful enthusiasm in the world canít save the fact that they checked the diversity at the door. Within 10 minutes' time, the songs become muddled and hard to distinguish, with barely any individual element changing between them; itís always the same mid-tempo attack with raspily screamed vocals. Even the weakly attempted gang vocals at the end of ďBlack SheepĒ feel like they were thrown on for the sake of it, and they lack a full sound that would help separate from the increasingly mundane offerings.
I have a lot of respect for people that truly do stand for something, I just wish the latter half of Mr. Hamiltonís thought echoed into the actual music, because if that doesnít fall, your interest surely will.
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