Listen to 405 Radio
  • No Events

    We'll get something in the diary soon

Duke Raoul - Young Starlings [EP]

Duke Raoul - Young Starlings [EP]

by , 13 July 2011

“Holy Jesus. What are these goddamn animals?”

Well, they are Duke Raoul, presumably named after the Hunter S. Thompson drug munching character in Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas and other works. Part of Brighton's Prime Cut Music and Anti Ghost Moon Ray families, the four-piece band have a neat cover of the late Gerry Rafferty's solo hit Baker Street plus Esben and the Witch and Erland and the Carnival support credits to their name and now, a shiny new EP.

The four tracks which make up the fifteen minute long Young Starlings recording have just enough in them to demonstrate a lurking talent, with solid structure to each number and the lilting haunt of singer Alex Painter's singing throughout, akin to something of a Chris Martin and Kele Okereke hybrid.

The flow of tumbling tom rolls and muted guitar runs in opener 'Cloak and Dagger' set the tone nicely for the EP, a gentle fall through sweet harmonies, offset at the all right points by Painter's occasionally (pleasant) piercing style.

In contrast, the blunt start to the song 'Young Starlings' is faster, darker and more fleet of foot. A handful of well-worked key changes throughout the verses and fuzzier, twisting blasts of rhythm guitar underpinned by a consistent bass – perhaps the point where the band's Sonic Youth and Bowie influences can be heard – all result in a tight and melodic track.

'Break Up Your Routine' is a little more of the same; steady, dependable and well meted background vocals, a hypnotic backbeat of differing textures and levels and a straightforward formula, whereas final track 'Made of Magic' is altogether cockier and upfront - amps are set in Fuzz Lightyear mode, crash cymbals meet their maker and Painter is a little more unpredictable and raw, making for one hell of a dirty, grubby and pretty satisfying finale.

The Young Starlings EP is, in a few parts and maybe intentionally, a little fuzzy production wise meaning some of the vocals and arrangements disappear under rolls of bass and mid-range fat. Overall though Duke Raoul should be proud owners of a decent recording and certainly a unique sound. As Raoul Duke may have put it, “Too weird to live, and too rare to die”.


Don't Miss Out

Related Reviews

  • Duke Raoul - Strange/Dead Echoes

    Duke Raoul - Strange/Dead Echoes

    by Ryan Barham

    Label: Prime Cut Release date: 22/03/10 Website: Myspace Named after Hunter S. Thompson’s infamous anti-hero and hailing from Brighton Duke Raoul release their debut single – a double a-side of ‘Strange’ and ‘Dead Echoes’, out on vinyl and download. Already favourites of The 405, the first thing we should mention is the awesome artwork on the release (check it out there above) courtesy of Sarai Vardi. Having amassed an impressive slew of supports to the likes of The Future... [read more]

  • Fleet Foxes - Mykonos

    Fleet Foxes - Mykonos

    by Amanda Gardner

    First off I must make it clear that I am typing this while still under the influence of this track, as I’m finding it hard to press stop. For those of you who have heard from Fleet Foxes before, their natural musical genius will be nothing new. For those of you who have yet to surrender your ears to this aural bliss, this is the perfect place to start. While listening to this track, I’m finding it hard to believe that this impeccable line up could have been anything short of fate.... [read more]

  • Fleet Foxes - Helplessness Blues

    Fleet Foxes - Helplessness Blues

    by Al Horner

    Perched on America's western coast, the seaside city of Seattle has a certain knack for gifting music to the wider world, from the anguished grunge scrawl of Nirvana to Jimi Hendrix's iconic revisions of American rock. Brush aside the city's ties to 80s punk circles and Woody Guthrie-era radical folk, and you're still left with Sub Pop's untouchable output. What then of Fleet Foxes, the latest of Seattle natives to cause a stir in the music world? Well, Helplessness Blues, the sequel to th... [read more]

  • The Raudive - Ghost Box

    The Raudive - Ghost Box

    by Kate Bradley

    Label: Sugarbeet Stallion Release date: 19/10/09 Website: Official Website, MySpace From the opening song on The Raudive's new album Ghost Box, it is full, to the brim, with Sonic Youth influence. A fade in from distorted amp noise starts ‘Warning’, before lo-fi guitar chords and a second guitar’s quiet thrumming emerge, soft and simply done, but appealing. Finally, chords and an Editors-esque vocal line burst forth, in the same way as fast guitar-strumming and serious vocals burst... [read more]


Follow Us

Recommended Posts

Popular Posts

Mailing List

Sign up to our weekly mailing list.