“Let me paint a picture of what you’re going through,” pleads Tony Young on the title track of King Cotton’s second album. A fusion of folk, rock, and of course blues, King Cotton formed in Tallahassee in 1997, and has since swept Alabama, Georgia, and Florida, playing festivals, clubs, and selling over 3000 copies of their debut album, 10′ Tall. Aside from touring and basking in their accomplishments, the members of King Cotton have been recording Ultra Blues, focusing more on the execution of deeply inspired tracks such as “Signs Of Love” (which boasts some very vicious guitar work by Eddie Gooden), the haunting, classic sounding “Voodoo Woman,” “Modern Life” (featuring Bill Gay on lead guitar) and “Queen Of Goodbyes” (which tells the story of an unattainable woman, complete with an amazing solo by blues harp player Richard Bevis).
Ultra Blues isn’t the type of record you understand the first time around; in fact, upon first listen their sound is rather mediocre, a been there, done that of Kenny Wayne Sheppard. However, miraculously, the second, third, and fourth time, the vocals seem to fall into their own groove, the music brings you to the tiny, smoky venues you wish you’d been able to hear something this good in and 2:21 into the first track, “If Ya Got It,” all you can think is, “Kenny Wayne who?”
King Cotton, as a group, has undeniable talent but they remain a little rough around the edges in a way that doesn’t help their image or their music. While mixing rock with blues makes for an outstandingly popular sound, this group in particular would benefit from even more B.B.King and far less Eagles, because their true ability is being hidden under the heavier sound, which is really only half as good as the blues they can produce. Regardless, after sharing stages with acts such as Styx, George Clinton, The Outfield, Buddy Guy, and B.B. himself, the only place for King Cotton to go is the other 47 states. Heads up for their tour dates in a city near you, because this is an act that definitely deserves a thorough listen, and and in true blues fashion, does indeed paint a picture of what you’re going through.
King Cotton: http://www.mp3.com/kcbb