King Goon – Admit Nothing! Deny Everything! Lie! Lie! Lie!
King Goon – “Admit Nothing! Deny Everything! Lie! Lie! Lie!” Self Release 25 March 2022
- GAMBLING FOOL
- THREE CHEERS FOR THE FAT ITALIAN
- TOPS OFF PRPOER FIGHTING
- EYES! EVERYWHERE! EYES!
- CALL IT A DAY
- JUST WHOSE SIDE ARE YOU ON
- ON THE DRINK
- BEAUTS & CONSEQUENCES
- LANGUAGE OF WAR
- PRETTY WORDS
I think Tom Jones was doing covers of Prince songs when I first heard the mutterings around Swansea that King Goon had entered the studio to record their debut album. Initial release plans were scuppered due to various reasons (Re-recording the vocals, personnel changes, global pandemics, Ken Barlow leaving Coronation Street (okay, I made the last one up)) but for one reason or another, it has taken ages for the Swansea sextet to get here.
The King Goon live philosophy has always been “make sure ‘they’ have a good time, get ‘them’ to dance and get ‘them’ to think about the meaning of the songs.” Now to transfer this philosophy onto a recording is no mean feat, but man alive, they do it and they do it well.
Opening track and live favourite “Gambling Fool” is a perfect example of their ‘philosophy’ at work. You just have to start moving to the ska like rhythms, Hywel Griffiths’ drummimg and the excellent sax playing provided by Elaine Forde that gives the music that edge.
Admit Nothing! Deny Everything! Lie! Lie! Lie! is filled with such moments, tracks like “Three Cheers For The Fat Italian” and the superb “Language of War” carry the mantra in leaps and bounds. “Beauts & Consequences” and “Pretty Words” also hit hard with their lyrical content, it’s no wonder that all these numbers are well known to the King Goon faithful. You have no choice but to sing along and move.
Sometimes reminiscent of The Clash (Realpolitik), The Pogues (“On The Drink”) and even The Cure (“Tops Off Proper Fighting”) but always with the scattered originality of a Frank Zappa live show. Not always pretty, but always pretty damned good. This is a very ‘grown up’ type of record.
The album is full of clever, fun songs that mostly have darker meanings and strong often heart felt messages. Delve deeper into Joel Morgan’s lyrics and discover songs about the state of the world, corupt leaders, the unfairness of rich versus poor, the constant fight for some to just survive the life that fate has dealt them. Songs with a hedonistic twist and songs that offer no solution, there are no happy endings here.
The exceptional “Eyes! Everywhere! Eyes!” is a new track to me and I am very impressed with James Morgan’s bass skills here. “Eyes! Everywhere! Eyes!” is slightly different for King Goon as the more commercial first part suddenly breaks into the heavier second part where we get some outstanding guitar playing from Keith Robertson.
So, it’s not like I wasn’t prepared in any way, it’s not like I had never heard of King Goon, or seen them live or watched their videos etc. It was just that I didn’t expect this album to affect me in the way that it did. My long suffering wife Julie is now convinced that I need help as I am often found around the house shouting things like “You’ve got yours and I’ve got mine” and I have now developed an obscure tendency to suddenly start dancing for no aparent reason.
If you can, I urge you to listen to this album or seek out a King Goon gig, the band are now joined by James Mitchell on Keyboards and Bouzouki and are simply amazing live. Just warn your legs before you go.
With regards to this ‘philosophy’ that I mentioned ealier, “Admit Nothing! Deny Everything! Lie! Lie! Lie!” is an album like no other. It will entertain you, it will make you sing, make you dance and make you think. I’d say that was mission accomplished.
Elaine Forde: Saxaphone
Hywel Griffiths: Drums/Percussion/Vocals
James Morgan: Bass/Vocals
Joel Morgan: Guitar/Lead Vocals
Keith Robertson: Guitar
Tom Emlyn: Keyboards