What’s The Rockbrat Listening To Today ? KEVIN K and the KOOL KATS – ALLIES CD (2013)

We are indeed – blessed. 2013, and the great Kevin K is still releasing original, new rock n roll of the highest quality.  If you are a young’un reading this, dissatisfied by inferior, bland bands from your own peer group – Kevin K rock n roll is what you are looking for. Kevin’s music has enriched my life for 20 years, and in my opinion, there is none better. Kevin K is the definitive rock n roller – and is my favourite artist – past, present, and future. Why ? His songs are memorable, his songs are durable. No one has a better penchant for melody, no one writes songs with a better hook, and as ‘Allies’, his twentieth something album attests, his song writing / story telling have strong, instant appeal that engage the listener. Thematically, ‘Allies’ continues on from other recent Kevin K albums (Deutschland, Firestorm etc), which focus on the impact of World War 2, including key battles, the D-Day landings, the bombing of both England and Germany. ‘Allies’ is dedicated to the heroes of WW II, (including Kevin’s father, who was with General MacArthur when he famously returned to the Philippines). ‘Allies’ also refers to the various nationalities of the various band members who made this album – all Allies of rock n roll in the war against the jive. The album contains a whopping 23 tunes, 11 of which are new ones. A bunch of these were recorded with his Euro band line-up (Ricky Rat on guitar, stalwart Ritchie Buzz on bass and Laur Bomb on drums), a couple of the others were recorded with Duane Rollick and Billy Summer in Florida. The album opens with the call to arms anthem that is “Allies Of Rockin Roll” – a salute to the rock ‘n’ roll brethren across the globe that actually get what Kevin K rock ‘n’ roll is all about.  “This Time Around” follows up next – heavy on the melody, super catchy chorus, great hook – the Kevin K formulae for crafting archetypal power pop/punk – and after having written hundreds and hundreds of songs over the years, he is indeed, a master of his craft. The ruminating “Lost My Marbles” is a superbly crafted tune, menacingly melodic and hard to beat – another Alan K tune that is pure gold. “Red White and Blue” is another tell-tale tune about the courage of a Flying Fortress pilot – with a stunning solo and catchy riff. “Meet Me At The Party” is pure pop punk excess with likeable lead vocals by Ritchie Buzz. There’s a reworking of Kevin’s tribute to Jerry Nolan, “Countdown For a Doll” that originally appeared on his “From The Delta To The Bowery” acoustic CD, and sounds killer with a band behind it. I forgot how good this tune was. ‘Give Me Back My Girl’ is fantastic power pop, an ode to a former love resplendent with strings on the chorus. There is no one, repeat, no one on the planet who can pen catchy pop songs as consistently well as Kevin K.  Yes he should have been mega successful in the world of rock n roll, (go buy his book and read all about his life in rock ‘n’ roll here), but he just keeps keeping on, writing and playing his music to anyone who cares to listen – and listen you should. “Hell’s Kitchen” is all 77 style punk, before ‘Crazy For You’, the obligatory ode to Jennifer Love Hewitt comes blasting outta my speakers. Catchy, melodic and draped in pop sensibilities. This should justly be top ten ! How many songs has KK penned about JLH now ? Enough for a double CD release me thinks! ‘Cool Fools’ with its sing-along chorus rounds out proceedings. As a bonus, you also get the ‘13th Street’ album, (originally released back in 2001 on my old label Vicious Kitten Records) with all 12 tunes remastered with new sonic appeal, so crank ‘em up nice and loud! If you are a fan of Kevin K, you will dig this CD, if not, become an ally of rock n roll and discover what I have known for a long time now – Kevin K rock n roll is the best there is. If you buy only one album this year – you should make it this one. ‘Allies’ scores 10 out of 10. Buy it here.

Kevin K – The Successful Loser DVD – Buy here

Kevin K – How To Become A Successful Loser Book Buy here

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