13. King Krule - 'The Ooz'
Release date: October 13
This year was a bit of a clusterfuck across the globe, but the return of King Krule was a silver lining. The Ooz runs an hour long, but by the time you've gone through all 19 tracks in one sitting you won't be ready for it to end. On this record, Archy Marshall doesn't just let the listener into his complicated mind, he tears himself wide open. King Krule slowly reels you in with the moody "Biscuit Town" before dragging you across the floor and into the pit with angst-ridden tracks like "Dum Surfer” and “Half Man Half Shark.” For every punch, there’s a mellow interlude slipped, in like “Sublunary” or “The Cadet Leaps,” so you have enough time to recover before the next blow. All the while, Marshall's deep howls and yelps bring the songs to life as he shouts tongue twisters about various struggles triggered by his former muse.
There's a lot of noise on The Ooz as the band veers from jazz to punk and R&B. At first glance, this mix of styles could be jarring, but King Krule makes it work. His voice is supported by a combination of guitars, saxophones, drums, keyboards, and bass that give the songs a rich texture. There are moments where the emotions stirred up on these songs feel both suffocating and exhilarating, but the bite is worth the pain.
Ultimately, this is a body of work that shows tremendous growth from an artist who is still trying to figure out how and where to leave his mark on the world. In the end, he’s building the road to his bright, blue future and The Ooz is an indication that he's making great strides.—Sydney Gore