Band: Little King

CD Title: “Legacy of Fools”

Band Website: www.littlekingmusic.com

Label: Unicorn Digital

Label Website: www.unicorndigital.com

Release Date: 2008

 

Back for their second release on Unicorn Digital, their fourth overall including their two independent CD’s is El Paso TexasLittle King with a new concept CD entitled Legacy of Fools. This time around band leader and high school English teacher Ryan Rosoff has crafted a set of songs that deal with, in his words, “All that we have inherited and what we are willfully leaving behind.” Musically Legacy of Fools not only pick’s up where they left off with the previous Virus Devine but ad’s substantially to the band’s musical approach and repertoire.

 

The one thing about being together for 11 years means that change will undoubtedly come into play and that proves to be true with Little King. Fronted by Rosoff (vocals, guitars) the group now consists of Michael Esparza (bass) and Eddy Garcia (drums). Adding to this line-up are Ruben Gutierrez (keyboards), Lyris Soto (violin) as well as Heather Oglesby and Betsy Tinajero (backing vocals).

 

Legacy of Fools to my ears delivers a much fuller and more varied musical pallet, no doubt enhanced by the additional players and certainly by the keyboards which appear on seven of the nine tracks. The CD starts of with the track “Prodigal Son” and comes across with a real 60’s sound both in the guitars and the vocal harmonies. It’s kind of a cross between early Who and the Kinks. It’s guitar oriented, upbeat with those familiar harmonies. The compositions are song based, with an emphasis on melodies. It isn’t until we get to track 3 “Collateral Damage” where the tunes start to reflect a little more Art-Rock influence. By that I mean we have the guitars up-front, keyboards providing a subtle backdrop or atmosphere and the rhythm section moving the song in some creative directions. The added keyboards are certainly a welcome touch, but this remains music that is mostly guitar based. The two instrumentals allow for the band to rock, while the other compositions provide ample room for Rosoff to perform equally adeptly on electric and acoustic guitar. By track seven “Legacy” the compositions seem to get more complex with some interesting changes in time, tempo and mood affecting the sound. 

 

As with their previous release, some in the prog community may question, does this work fall into the progressive rock category and as before I’d say the answer to that depends on how liberal your definition of prog is. I’d be more inclined to categorize the music of Little King as Art Rock with a sixties, almost psychedelic influence. At the same time Legacy of Fools is quite a progressive leap over their previous CD and will easily appeal to fans of bands like Jadis or Tiles. All-in-all it’s another fascinating listening experience both musically and lyrically and one that definitely grows on you with repeated listenings.  

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