king loser is the kind of band i’ve always wanted to form. more of a loose collection of friends (with an almost comical approach to drum-throne rotation), yet somehow managing to get it together enough to release 3 brilliant albums and a number of inspired singles, king loser put the scuzz in scuzz-rock.
like some kind of evil take on nancy sinatra and lee heazleoowd, the domineering front of chris heazlewood and celia mancini (nee patel/pavlova) trade off vocal barbs (him – rugged and biting, her – sultry and fork-tongued) over a bed of surf-guitar, jungle-grooves or just good-old american lo-fi hiss-rock.
utterly theatric, each band member who passed through their ranks took on a distinct persona (pat faigan became duane zarakov, lance strickland became tribal thunder) and the band played up their over-the-top american inspiration. thankfully it wasn’t all show, as king loser layed down some of the meanest guitar and hottest songs this country has even seen, and deserved far greater recognition than they actually received.
the origins of the band are a bit murky, both heazlewood and sean o’rielly shared several projects together, with sferic experiment, spacious, sf and olla being the primary suspects. pavlova was in the stepford 5 with rita le quesne in christchurch, whom zarakov played with in the axel grinders.
picks in bold
- ‘stairway to heaven’/’exit the king’ 7″ single [1993 flying nun FN283] rn
- supersonic hi-fi [1993 turbulence / flying nun tur-oo5 / FN299]
- ‘tie us down’/’matchstick men’/’never hear surf music again’ 7″ single [1993 18 wheeler EWR-005] rn
- you cannot kill what does not live [1995 flying nun FN309] rn
- ‘troubled land’/’pow wow’ 7″ single [1996 flying nun FN394]
- ‘troubled land’/’pow wow’/’vamp kamp’/’down from doves’ cd single [1996 flying nun FN394]
- caul of the outlaw [1997 flying nun FN382]