Death Folk Will Never Die: King Dude’s Morbid Acoustics

The arena of death folk is woefully underpopulated. Perhaps not “woefully.” If this particular field were to expand past Current 93 and presumably a handful of other bands I’m not aware of (Mumford & Sons want in), it would cease to be a fascinating sidebar and just become a pretentious irritant instead.

Fortunately, very few artists have grabbed an acoustic guitar and stared resolutely into the abyss, thus leaving King Dude to be an anomaly in a house full of witches. Slaves, his duet with White Ring’s Kendra relies more on atmosphere than strumming, resulting in a langorous bit of nightmarish dreamscaping, not entirely removed from various This Mortal Coilers 4AD’s dropped over the years.

King Dude – Slaves (featuring Kendra of White Ring)

Witch’s Hammer is more upfront with the deathfolk angle. Nothing but King Dude and his guitar crafting a foreboding ode to a Satanic nemesis. The track seems to be much larger than the sum of its parts, a lot of which has to be attributed to Dude’s vocals which range from Black Mass High Priest in mid-portentous proclamation to a slightly-above-stage whisper. No twee harmonics here, just pitch black Death:Unplugged.

King Dude – Witch’s Hammer

[It is definitely just me but Dude’s voice made me want to capitalize every “His” and “Him” in this post. But I resisted. Get thee behind me and etc.]




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7 responses to “Death Folk Will Never Die: King Dude’s Morbid Acoustics

  1. It’s 1988. A homemade Dead Can Dance/This Mortal Coil tape is on repeat in the cassette player, while Philip quotes Tropic of Cancer and I handroll Bugler tobacco cigarettes. We end the night waiting for Godot.

    Thanks for the eerily smilar vibes.

    • It’s nice to travel back in time without packing a lot of useless nostalgia. It’s also nice to be able to use phrases like “handrolling a Bugler” without being arrested for solicitation.

      If that Godot prick ever shows up, it’ll ruin everything.

  2. It’s 1988??? Oh, crap. My stupid time machine is on the fritz. My hair is big and my tie is skinny. Now where’d I put that Pixies LP…?

    • My arms are a wave of mutilation, and I can’t hear you, since I spent the last year listening to my boyfriend’s band play C.O.C. songs in his basement. Nice tie.

    • Oh, hey. There’s something very tasty in my email inbox. Be back shortly. (And yes, it’s 1988. Today only.)

      • I wouldn’t do 1988 over again if someone paid me. I’m glad to have something halfway reminiscent/halfway newfangled to listen to. It’s a breath of fresh air, or perhaps a breath of stale, near-dead, creepy air. But still.