This Other Kingdom At The Academy 2 – Review
Dublin’s finest psych rock band This Other Kingdom have been making quite a fuss as of late. They notably enthralled us at the newly established Reverberation festival as well as the Hard Working Class Heroes weekender. A headline gig in the intimate venue of The Academy 2 was never going to be one to miss.
Providing support for the night are Exploding Eyes, a three piece powerhouse of a rock band with an unstoppable energy. Drawing on classic rock ’n’ roll sounds as well as their own modern take on the genre, tunes like ‘We Need Love’ summarise all this band is about: monster riffs, thumping drums and massive vocals. Oh, they’ve got damn fine haircuts too.
The headliners quickly emerge to the stage, and immediately set the tone of the evening with otherworldly guitar sounds, pounding drums and some seriously tripped out dancing from the frontman, Del Kerton. Easily putting the crowd in a trance with the psychedelic vibes, tunes like ‘He Controls The Sea’ are gentle in the verses and ease the listener into a lull before blasting them with the raw power of the coda.
While more than capable of creating some pretty soundscapes, TOK prove they can write some damn fine trippy pop songs. Sounding almost like Revolver era Beatles at times, ‘Egocentric’ could easily be played by any number of alternative DJs on mainstream radio. The jangling guitars and powerful vocals are unique, but also quite attractive to your average listener.
As the set comes closer to its finale, the visibly exhausted frontman announces that they were recently signed to an English label, and that we ‘wouldn’t be getting rid of them any time soon’. A collective feeling of euphoria for this band is unavoidable as the boys go about finishing the set. ‘The Day, Your Day’ is a standout track, performed with every fibre of energy they have left.
Most now pushing up to the front, the frontman laps it up via some intense crowd interactions. Handling a tambourine as if he were charming a snake, it’s hard not to be totally sucked into the world of This Other Kingdom.
Finishing the performance with offstage interpretive dancing, it’s quite apparent that a performance such as this can be described as nothing other than a spectacle. Sheer passion for your craft is an admirable thing, and if this is only the beginning of TOK’s psychedelic journey, we can only hope they take us with them.