Getting to experience Blind-era Corrosion Of Conformity during the annual New England Metal and Hardcore Fest was a blessing in disguise as it reintroduced me to the beauty of Karl Agell’s voice. Returning home, I scoured the interwebs to discover King Hitter, the latest project from Agell which coincidentally enough feature members currently touring with the Blind-era line up of Corrosion of Conformity.
But onto King Hitter.
First off, any band that has a song named after their band is already A-Okay in my book (SNOT!) so “King Hitter” which opens the EP is almost immediately a homerun on that alone. It helps that the song is bad ass as all hell and sees Agell as a beast once again behind the mic. In the years since his stint in COC (And Leadfoot which followed with fellow one-time COC-er Phil Swisher), Agell has grown considerably as a vocalist and King Hitter is undeniable proof of that.
“Drone Again” is just a slam-you-over-the-head good hard rock jam while “Feel No Pain” is like Motorhead meets swamp boogie with electrifying riffage and an anthemic chorus as Jon Chambliss bashes away like a maniac. Elsewhere “Suicide (Is The Retirement Plan)” really gets into the sludge with Chuck Manning’s bass sending tremors through your bones at the beginning and the aptly titled “The End” which closes out the EP really hearkens back to Blind with Mike Brown and Scott Little’s dueling guitars taking center stage, occasionally broken up by Agell’s gruff delivery (Think “Great Purification” or “White Noise” especially).
King Hitter is out now through bandcamp. Click the link below and spend a few bucks on some of the greatest original rawk you’ll hear in 2015.