The Kül

Soul 4 Gold (Rare Image)

The Kül's influences aren't exactly hidden within this, the band's debut release. No, the four-piece's sound is an obvious blend of rock and funk gods Jimi Hendrix and Sly & the Family Stone. But despite these well-traveled routes, the band's sound manages to come off as surprisingly fresh.

Much credit, of course, goes to frontman Johnny Lenix's way. He's the obvious star here, with his more-Kravitz-than-Hendrix vocals leading the band on its brawny way toward evoking mental images of muscle cars, bell-bottoms and field parties. Yep, this is good-time music—funky when it needs to be, effortlessly rowdy and catchy almost to a fault.

But the surprise comes in the slight tweaks the band makes to its expected sound: Opening track "Everyday" starts the disc off on a stoner-rock foot; "Kronic Kastle" finds the band in tip-top Hendrix-aping form; "We Can Live" offers up a TV on the Radio-esque funk-out; obligatory ballad "I Cry" finds the band comfortable in Lenny Kravitz's soft-rock territory; and "Get Me Off" utilizes a rockabilly foundation to fine effect. Hell, even the rudimentary self-production comes off surprisingly well, dirtying up a sound that might be a bit hokey if presented too cleanly.

Head into the album knowing that the riffs on Soul 4 Gold aren't necessarily original, but accept it for what it is, and enjoy the jam-packed ride it offers.

 
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