Salem, “King Night”

The title track to King Night, Salem’s  latest wastes no time.  It is a powerful, cinematic spectacle of a song.  That goes for the rest of the album too.  It’s a massive soundscape and I imagine that it is the music that is coursing through Watson’s processors as he works on becoming self-aware when not beating Ken Jennings on Jeopardy.

King Night goes everywhere at once.  It’s reaching out for something beyond itself and tends toward blowing everything out to get there.  It’s a big sound, maybe even monumental.  Not monumental in the “this is an important record” sense, it’s not.  It’s just big.  It’s a monument of sound – big, in-your-face, electronic sound.  It’s certainly a good album, but is better heard on speakers as opposed to headphones.

It’s not music made for walking around.  Dancing maybe – slowly gyrating on a tightly packed dance floor – with glow sticks.  King Salem also wouldn’t be out-of-place in a church.  It might actually fit better in an old, Gothic cathedral than a club.  One constructed with massive stone blocks, with high ceilings, and those oh-so-Catholic stained glass windows with scenes of martyrs being martyred.

King Night is going to pop up on the scores of undergraduate film projects for the next year.  It’s perfect for a movie about humans fighting for survival.  Not just from aliens, but people fighting their own demons, saving their loved ones, fighting for their relationships.  Whether they meant to or not, Salem put together a record that tries for gravitas and succeeds – in the best way possible.  You can listen to the record and assign your own meaning to it.  But listen to it on your home stereo, car speakers and headphones are too small for this album.

Listen here

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