This is a review of "Untitled" recorded by King Tonka. The review was written by Noah Brown in 2004.
My attention was alerted to this band when a live review likened them to Big Black and Cop Shoot Cop. I'm not that familiar with the latter, but to these ears King Tonka don't sound anything like Albini's lot. Which is a shame for me, but... this is alright. So I can't exactly write a passionate review, but if you like Queens Of The Stone Age, Lostprophets, Soundgarden or have a penchant for the old Seattle thing, you'll get on with this well. It's quite commercial, and the singer sounds a tiny bit like James Hetfield in places, which is nice. King Tonka specialise in epic, bombastic rock that telegraphs every movement - subtlety's not on the agenda here. I did get a bit bored by the last track, mind. This is aiming for MTV2, and you can see the clenched mics and closed eyes in the video already.
The first track has some rap-metal-ish bits and big power choruses that, in a lazy way, did make me think of a slightly dirtied up Lostprophets or something. It's heavy and confident, but a bit formulaic. Third track "My Mistress" is quality. There's no tongues anywhere near cheeks here - this is harmonic power as earnest as Saxon or Manowar. It's very metal, and it works.
The songs are too long, it's a tad samey and could do with some more exciting dynamics in places. The playing's good, the voice is strong and this is a well-produced demo for sure, but it could with a bit more wildness and sloppiness. Ultimately, this CD is not really buffing my pylon, but I'm sure other punters will be more keen.