Kings of Convenience: Declaration of Dependence (Astralwerks) | Under the Radar - Music Magazine
Friday, January 22nd, 2021  

Kings of Convenience

Declaration of Dependence


Oct 21, 2009 Issue #28 Fall 2009 - Monsters of Folk Bookmark and Share

For those about to rock, Kings of Convenience salute you. That's rock as in "rocking chair" or "rock yourself to sleep."

On their third proper LP, Norway's answer to Simon & Garfunkel have toned down their already low-key demeanor, removing from the mix anything that doesn't fall under the category of voices or wooden, stringed instruments.

As such, this disc ends up coming out of a similar space as the duo's debut, Quiet Is the New Loud, rather than their last effort, 2004's more textured (and generally more satisfying) Riot on an Empty Street.

Declaration isn't without its memorable moments, such as the subtle bounce of "Mrs. Cold" and "Boat Behind" or the autumnal "Freedom and Its Owner" and "Renegade." But the record is vastly frontloaded, its first half largely more dynamic and nuanced than its potentially nap-inducing coda.

Though the proceedings have a tendency to run together after a point, a remix campaign would be welcome, similar to Versus, the eclectic electronic remix set that followed the pair's debut.

Produced by the band and Davide Bertolini, who manned the boards on their previous effort, all the typical Kings of Convenience ingredients are here, but they don't add up to quite the right recipe.

Maybe it's the long lag time between releases that accounts for such a lackluster result. Erlend Øye has spent the last few years prodigiously pouring forth new music—both on his own and with The Whitest Boy Alive—so maybe the two are just creatively tapped out.

Whatever the reason, this uninspired offering isn't enough to satisfy the long-building itch for new Kings tunes—and, if the past is any indication—aside from a few brief tours we may not hear much from the duo for another four years. (                                   

Author rating: 5/10

Rate this album
Average reader rating: 8/10


Submit your comment

Name Required

Email Required, will not be published


Remember my personal information
Notify me of follow-up comments?

Please enter the word you see in the image below:

October 22nd 2009

mellow but good/interesting mellow, not boring mellow.  also check out whitest boy alive (same singer)