Waterford’s King Kong Company are not new to the scene, they’ve been around the block, they’ve done the festivals, the raves, they went through the break-up, the fan heartbreak and the re-union. But it is only now they are ready to tell their story with the release of their debut album.
I really don’t believe King Kong Company go in for that kind of sentimentality but the debut album is a big deal for them. A decade in the making and even a six month delay because they are perfectionists it is due for release June 17th. The group are well known for their sets at festivals both here and abroad and there is no doubt pressure was felt in the camp. “It was a long time coming”, explains Mark White, a producer in his own right, “there was a certain amount of perfectionism involved. But that is what always drives us on”. “We are now ok with the release it is time”. Originally due for release the end of 2015 the band had sent a final track to Neil MeLellan for mixing. And suddenly everything changed. “He just got us! He understood and related to our influences and it just fitted”, replied White. “It was just so good and he was really passionate about it and when you are passionate about something it’s not just about paying the bills”. McLellan went on to mix the entire album. White goes on to explain that the band really wanted to capture the live energy of the band (not an easy ask I imagine).
I ask how he feels at the other end of the process. “We decided a few years ago to make the record and gathered material over three years and at times it’s a very difficult process with so much content and ideas floating around. But it is just good to get it down. We are already gathering material for the next release because we learned so much doing this that we got the hunger again”. The hunger meaning that they learned the hard way about making a record and are ready to tackle that monster again. “We were naive in our expectations, in the amount of time it took to experiment and invest time in trying 10s, 20s, 30s combinations. We learned making decisions earlier was a good thing, to work faster and move forward. We are now in a better place and confident in our decisions”, he added.
King Kong Company are well know for their wry take on things and their recent video releases are good examples for new fans coming into the fold. “There is definitely a rebellious, punk attitude to us. I wouldn’t say it’s obvious but it runs underneath. We try and keep the aesthetic fun, comic and quirky” said White. And there is plenty of fun to be had on the bands new venture into the world of social media and web presence. Check out the new website
. “There are five core members along with Trish our dancer in the group. And we all relate to a certain amount of angst and unwillingness to conform”, confirms White. So social media and internet duties are handled by Luke Abott who is ” a social guru and looks at things psychologically”. You didn’t think King Kong Company were going to do things willy nilly, did you?
King Kong Company – The Album is out today, June 17th. In other news, King Kong Company are gearing up for a jam packed summer of festivals. “We do about 10 annually”, said White. “It’s a niche we fell into. The festival crowd is a very open crowd and that suits us. We love it and if we weren’t playing we’d be there anyway”. What are Mark White’s top festival tips? “Appropriate footwear. We’ve seen girls in stilettos and guys in E200 white runners. And Attitude. You need to be in the right head space to really enjoy a festival. Ireland’s summer is so short you need to get out there and make the most of it”.
Check them out at the following Irish dates:
JUN 24th – Sea Sessions, Bundoran, Fri 6 PM
JUL 1st – Daytripper Festival, Waterford Fri 6 PM
JUL 14th – Roisin Dubh 11pm
JUL 31st – Indiependence Festival, Mitchlestown Sun 6 PM
SEPT 30th – The Academy, Dublin