Busy Kingdom do good time rock n roll justice

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The mantra of ‘Grohl is God’ is one that is saturated in rock music culture. He’s played in some of the most seminal rock bands from the last 25 years, drums like a boss, has a bottomless pit of front man charisma and slays concerts with one leg in a cast whilst sitting on a throne made of the guitars of enemies who were left with no choice but to bend the knee (we assume). So it stands to reason that any rock band coming up would aspire to and emulate what he has done in the past.

It’s an admirable way of thinking, especially considering there are so few who blend all the winning elements listed above. Which brings us to Busy Kingdom‘s self-titled EP. There are elements of Grohlisms peppered throughout the four piece’s five track, often working in their favour yet also at times a hindrance.

Busy Kingdom Woman

Melbourne’s Busy Kingdom do good time rock a solid on their debut self-titled effort, a straight forward, charming EP not afraid to flex some guitar muscle.

Let’s get the introductions out of the way first. Busy Kingdom formed in Melbourne back in 2012 and is made up of Michael Etherington, Brendan Etherington, Curtis Ardolino and Reggie Auldist-King. These boys know what they do and they do it well: good time rock and roll. When there are so many sub-genres of rock to delve into it’s nice to catch a breather and enjoy some meat and potatoes rock music. The melodies are straight forward and the guitars know their place is in the spotlight. This is the EP you want to throw on when you and your best bud are cruising down the highway, soaking in the sun and feeling the wind in your hair at 110 km/mph.

Produced by Lee Jones, the EP is a roadmap of the best rock tracks we’ve heard in the last 10 or so years. Opening track Woman is bolstered with confident guitars and plenty of “Woaaahhh Ohhhs“. The vocals are charismatic enough to draw you in and manage to be gritty when need be to sell the harder stuff too. I Never Wanted It This Way leans towards a more contemporary indie rock treatment with it’s frantic guitar work, while EP highlight Good For You dips a toe back into the foundation of all rock music – the blues. The sludgy riffs and lamenting, wailing vocals is reminiscent of fellow Melburnites Kingswood. Meanwhile Darcy, the typical mid-EP slow burn falls a little short. It’s a sorrowful track, but the pop-rock approach doesn’t help get the story across.

The EP as a whole is a solid entry into the Aussie rock arena from Busy Kingdom. Any fan of the Foo Fighters are bound to get a kick out of this five track. It’s a no nonsense rock EP; blunt, chock full of riffs and just enough of Grohl charm sprinkled throughout. Wherein lies the only problem with the EP; it just feels a little too familiar. There a few moments where you may feel you’re listening to a Fooies rarities album from the In Your Honour era. And hey, that album is tops but for Busy Kingdom to truly shine they need to step out on their own and really own their sound.

You can catch Busy Kingdom when they launch the EP at Cherry Bar in Melbourne this Friday July 24.

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