With a new line up and their own independent record label, the British blues rock band King King have surpassed themselves with what is undoubtedly the best album of 2020.

Whilst 2017’s Exile & Grace was critically acclaimed, this ten track offering simply called Maverick is brilliant. With Jonny Dyke on organ and piano, Zander Greenshields on bass, and Andrew Scott on drums, founding member, front man and lead singer Alan Nimmo has surrounded himself with highly talented musicians. And with the addition of his elder brother, Stevie on guitar and vocals, he has blown any concerns about changing line ups firmly out of the water.

Opening with Never Give In this is King King at their very best. With Nimmo’s vocals reminiscent of Paul Rogers this track showcases Nimmo’s fabulous guitar playing as well as Dyke’s beautiful Hammond organ which is present throughout the album. This is melodic blues rock of the highest order and is bound to be a sure fire live fans favourite.

Up next is Fire In My Soul, a quality song that is a real departure from their previous heavy blues based tracks from their earlier albums. This fast paced rocker has a catchy verse and chorus that will stay in your head all day.

Whatever It Takes To Survive is a real highlight as it slows the tempo right down. It is heavier on the blues side and shows Nimmo’s wonderful tone and soulful voice. With gentle dual guitar riffs taking centre stage the whole track is brought together with the Hammond organ enhancing the powerful chorus.

The first single from the album, I Will Not Fall is arguably the best track on it. With Scott keeping the tempo going throughout and Greenshields thumping bass line with Dyke’s outstanding organ contribution, this track has sing along lyrics which will no doubt be belted out by an enthusiastic crowd when this song is given a live airing. With its awesome harmonious vocals, it is no surprise that this track was given extensive radio airplay.

By Your Side is simply an absolutely beautiful track. Entering into ballad territory it opens with just a piano accompanying Nimmo’s on point soulful vocals before the guitars kick in to deliver this very special slow burner.

One World opens the second half of the album and takes over the tempo stakes again. Taking a different direction with its slight funky swagger, this is another track that has great keyboard work and a superb vocal melody. The upbeat feel continues with the opening of Everything Will Be Alright, which has radio hit written all over it. Nimmo’s, Dyke’s and Liam McCluskey’s production of this song is huge and the quality of it is undoubted.

Nimmo’s voice takes the spotlight on the slower When My Winter Comes. A simple piano accompaniment enhances the beautiful lyrics and with another killer chorus the layers of harmonies are fabulous. Dance Together is pacey with its upbeat tempo. This real toe tapper sees Scott moving the song along nicely with his drumming and with funky keys from Dyke this track has a real Whitesnake vibe.

End Of The Line with its American blues feel nods to an early Paul Rogers and the talented Joe Bonamassa with its intricate riffs. With its great soulful vocals there is no better way to bring this album to a close; it is another cracker.

Maverick is an album that you have to play again to see if you have missed something on its first listening. Every track stands on its own and there is truly not one single filler. It is so hard to pick a favourite track because you listen to one, decide that’s it and then the next one comes in and you have to have a re-think.

With this little gem, King King have produced the album of the year. It leaves your mouth open from beginning to end in awe with its top notch song writing, brilliant vocals and excellent production mix.

Our Rating: 5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)

Number of tracks: 10

Running time: 42:40

Released on: Channel 9 Music

Release date: 27th November 2020

Formats: CD/Vinyl/Digital

To Purchase: https://www.kingking.co.uk

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