Archy Marshall (born 24 August 1994), more commonly known by his stage name King Krule, is an English singer-songwriter and musician. After a hectic and troubled childhood, he began recording music in 2010. He has released several EPs, and his debut full-length album, 6 Feet Beneath the Moon, came out in 2013 to positive reviews. His music is difficult to classify, with elements of various genres like punk jazz, hip hop, darkwave, and trip hop.
Life and career:
Marshall's childhood was divided between his working-class, tolerant mother in East Dulwich and his strict father in Peckham. He claims to have suffered "a lot of weird shit" during this time, and at age 13 he began refusing to go to school. His parents were threatened with prison terms if they could not get him to attend again; he did not until his father dragged him there. He implied in an interview with The Guardian that he was diagnosed with at least one mental illness during this time and hated the medical system as a result. He also had insomnia, leading him to stay up late at night listening to The Pixies and The Libertines, which inspired him to create "soundscapes."
Marshall studied at Forest Hill School and then at the Brit School for three years between 2008 and 2011. In July 2011, Archy began playing under a new moniker, King Krule, at a festival in Hyères, France. His stage name is inspired by the film King Creole and not King K. Rool, the character from the Donkey Kong video game series.
He had released his debut single Out Getting Ribs under his Zoo Kid moniker on House Anxiety records in April 2010, recorded and mixed in his bedroom with his friends Francis North and Thelonious McCabe.
On 8 November 2011 he released a self-titled EP as King Krule on True Panther Sounds.
Archy also makes music under the moniker DJ JD Sports and Edgar the Beatmaker, the styles of which are significantly different from King Krule.
On 9 December 2012, the BBC announced that he had been nominated for the Sound of 2013 poll.
King Krule released his debut album 6 Feet Beneath the Moon on 24 August 2013. More than 50% of all tracks were already released on his precedent EPs. This brought him to prominence especially in the USA with performances on Conan and the Late Show with David Letterman. In October of the same year he embarked on a European tour, which was the last time he has appeared in the UK on tour to date. Following the success of this tour he then moved on to a tour of North America.
His most recent activity in terms of new solo releases to date is a video for A Lizard State released on 8 January which gained over 400,000 views on YouTube. After a short break he went on to tour Europe once again, inexplicably missing out on his homeland of the United Kingdom, which was his most recent public performance.
In February 2014, King Krule appeared on the cover of The Fader in its 90th issue.
Musical style and influences:
Many reviewers and journalists have noted King Krule's unusual transcendence and appropriation of disparate genres. His music has been described mainly with jazz derivatives such as punk jazz and jazz fusion, but also as darkwave,post-punk, and hip hop. Writers have also noted elements of trip hop,jazz rap, and dub in individual songs of his. Jason Lymangrover of Allmusic states that his songs are mainly in the form of ballads with major seventh chords, but by contrast there is also a "grittiness" to Archy's voice and persona, portraying him as "the type of kid who would be quick to throw a punch without asking questions."
His music has been likened to Morrissey and Edwyn Collins. He is inspired by disparate influences such as Gene Vincent, Fela Kuti and The Penguin Cafe Orchestra.