Aug 10, 2007

KINGHORSE "s/t" & "too far gone" CDs


In the late 80s and early 90s I was an avid reader of Thrasher magazine / Puszone (Artist Pushead’s feature column). For a few months I kept seeing these ads for a new Caroline release. The album was Kinghorse “self titled”. I was a little unsure of what to think of the ad for this unknown band (to me at least), but some things just kept pulling me towards wanting to check them out.

1. The cover art was drawn by none other than the legendary Pushead.
2. One of the band members was wearing a Bad Brains shirt in the group shot. Back then this was enough to make me want to buy a record.
3. The album was produced by Glen Danzig.


Even with all of these traits combined I was still hesitant. I’m still not sure why, probably because I was a broke ass little skate punk. Then a new skate video from Plan B Skateboards or maybe it was Girl Skateboards… either way the video came out and featured some amazing aggro segments of gnarly street skating accompanied by this raging unknown band. The songs fit the intense skating so well it made the video so much better and made me want to go wild in the streets “Thrashin” style. I checked the credits and wouldn’t you know it, it was Kinghorse. I was fucking stoked – time to go buy the CD. Their style of raw, balls out twist on punk, hardcore, and metal was right up my alley. All 4 members of this band have super strong elements that make them truly unique and powerful. Kinghorse started after Louisville band Maurice (who toured with Samhain) split up. 2 members went into Kinghorse and 2 other started the also legendary Slint.
I used to play this CD all of the time while I was on tour but no one else in the van ever appreciated it. In fact it got to the point where they thought I would just play it to drive everyone nuts but in truth I just loved it so much. It even came up as a discussion that I would no longer be allowed to play it in the van, Kinghorse was about to get vetoed which is just unacceptable. The tempo changes, hanging riffs, and dynamic vocals just made me want to go over the edge. But I guess the crazy vocals were a bit much for some people. Which ironically enough, I was in Brother’s Keeper who was notorious for our vocals, and no one in my band could stomach Kinghorse so go figure!?

Many years later I Stand Alone fanzine ran a very lengthy and in-depth interview with singer Sean. It was so long it spread through 2 issues. Adele I Stand Alone too had a soft spot for this Louisville, KY band. Louisville was one of those scenes were local bands could draw 500-1200 people a show and had a wide variety of talent & style unheard of throughout the rest of the US. Kinghorse were no different. Reading the interview it turns out that Danzig didn’t really have shit to do with producing their album, and I think he might have even chose the cover art more so than the band themselves. Kind of a bum out but interesting none the less. The band basically seemed like they weren’t into the album and the way it came out. Well I for one think it’s a great gem that more people should get into and give a chance. I purchased this CD probably in 1991 (I even have the CD longbox that they used to package CDs in back then – some of you younger whippersnappers will have no clue as to what I’m talking about) and it is still in heavy, heavy rotation here. I’ve always wanted to obtain a copy of it on LP but it’s been rather elusive so far. Turns out they had two 7” releases as well. After the Caroline CD local KY label Slamdek issued “Too Far Gone” which is basically all of their unreleased work from 1988-92. I have included both for your enjoyment as I believe both are out of print. I’m curious to hear some feedback on these guys, I’m guessing it’s not everyone’s cup of tea but that’s okay because I’ll always be a diehard listener. It seems that was always the case for Kinghorse, just never really fitting in anywhere in particular. This is probably why I like them so much myself. If I could get my hands on a Kinghorse shirt, now that would be something else! It's kind of crazy when you look back and think "Shit, I've been listening to this record for 15+ years!"
12 unreleased MP3s & homage to the band site: http://www.louisvillehardcore.com/bands/kinghorse/
Check out the Kinghorse fan myspace page: http://www.myspace.com/kinghorse502
Bio info here: http://history.louisvillehardcore.com/index.php?title=Kinghorse

DOWNLOAD:


KINGHORSE "self titled" LP/CD
1990 Caroline Records - Recorded by Steve Ett @ Chung King NYC

KINGHORSE "too far gone" CD
(unreleased material from 88-92)
1994 Slamdek Records

20 comments:

XMarkusX said...

I actually stumbled on those louisville hardcore -pages after watching that video you posted and few others. Kinghorse sounds pretty good and i'm going to put all those tracks you put up in my playlist right away. Hadn't ever even heard of this band and there seems to be few other louisville bands that are pretty good too.

Carter said...

I seem to remember the skate video in question being an H-Street production, but I could be wrong.

Anyway, I LOVE Kinghorse, but have found few outside of Louisville who share my enthusiasm.

Great post!

phild said...

fuck yes, that self titled cd is so fucking good. i havent ever heard the other one but i look forward to it.

Joe said...

Hell Yes! I used to have a Dubbed tape of this band that I got from a friend in high school.

Kinghorse was a soundtrack to at least 3 summers of skateboarding in 1992-1993...

"Your not man enough to open this cage...YEAAHHHHHH!!!!"

great post.

J Miller said...

I'm responsible for that page on louisvillehardcore.com. Kinghorse was a tremendous influence on my life and the lives of many, many people in and out of Louisville.

Jeff J Jawk said...

I am stoked!
Thanks brother!
I saw this band in 1990-91 at a place called the Wreck Room, and the singer was yelling at dudes while he was going nuts...
"watch your elbows fucking jocks"
after the show he told me he ate a PO'Folks with Minor Threat in the early 80s

Buske said...

Great band! I've never owned anything from them, only knew them and their sound through skate videos. Good look on this post, EMS.

Lo-Res Viscera said...

Good stuff, great blog but you need to post more often , ha ha!
Keep up the good work - I linked you, btw...

Anonymous said...

This band was amazing! The video you're talking about was "Risk it" by Santa Cruz. Tom Knox skated to Clayfist, and Mike Vallely skated to "Red." There was a few more KH songs on there, and a few songs from the Bad Brains "live in Amsterdam 1987" record. In fact, the soundtrack was exclusively Caroline Records bands.

Tom DK

bjorn dossche said...

i love kinghorse. great post ems. once found their lp in a second hand book/record store, but had no money on me so i hid it so i could go back and buy it the day after... ofcourse, when i came back the day after, it was gone.

fitzcarraldo said...

its quite easy to get this LP in europe. i stepped over it many times. last time last week in a regular punk record store in hamburg germany for a regular price. i got a copy and i just bought it for pushead/danzig connction and i never listen to it.

Dimidius said...

I'm from Louisvillian myself and around here Kinghorse is celebrated as a local legend along with: Out. , Red Sun, and The Glasspack. Our local music store: Ear-X-tacy, usually has a few copies of the Kinghorse album on LP and I own a copy myself. Great album.

JoeLag said...

Hell! I'm not the only Kinghorse addict in the whole world! I really love my Kinghorse CD - especially the terrific song Clayfist - since I stumbled over it ... must have been in the mid-90-ies. Striking voice, phantastic guitars, hammering bass, driving drums ... one of my alltime favs!

But indeed none of my friends ever shared my enthusiasm about Kinghorse. I've always thought this could be because I'm living in Germany - but it seems to be a world-wide-phenomenon.

Great post ... if only ever someone could re-up the "too far gone"-CD!

grapepowder said...

Awesome! Yup, i bought this as a used vinyl back in '91 or so, based on those same things: Pushead art, Glenn Danzig production, and Bad Brains t-shirt. Didn't know what it was, but it was cheap and it ended up on my turntable a lot. This brings back a lot of memories. Great post!

bbrg said...

Kinghorse was a massive influence on me as a young man growing up in Louisville. Like a lot of the best things, it's extremely difficult to explain to an outsider. Jamie Miller has done a good job trying (thanks, Jamie). Kinghorse is ineluctable and pervasive; moreover, they fuckin' rock. Thanks.

Daniel said...

As another Louisvillian, I have to say that all this praise for Kinghorse is well deserved. I was always too clumsy for skating(my knees hurt daily now, but The self titled album is my main sound-track for lifting.

Anonymous said...

Who would have thought the bad Brains T shirt would have ended up being a marketing ploy....? good thing Mike wore it every day for four years! Seriously, it is hard to describe Louisville at that time. There was so much diverse talent crammed into one show on any given Friday... What can I say? I lived for those shows as an escape from a pretty dreary home life. It was as much the people as it was the music.It was a very special time.... As such, for all you non-Louisvillians, if you wanna go down memory lane circa late 80s/early 90s, recommend the following: Kinghorse, Slint, King Kong, Endpoint, Undermine, Oblong Box (the one from Louisville), Craine, etc... (they were the biggest headliners of the times). The cumulative combo is really special. No single scene matched that period. And, I think/I hope we all remain connected for the rest of our lives, because we experienced something really extraordinary.

Anonymous said...

Who would have thought the bad Brains T shirt would have ended up being a marketing ploy....? good thing Mike wore it every day for four years! Seriously, it is hard to describe Louisville at that time. There was so much diverse talent crammed into one show on any given Friday... What can I say? I lived for those shows as an escape from a pretty dreary home life. It was as much the people as it was the music.It was a very special time.... As such, for all you non-Louisvillians, if you wanna go down memory lane circa late 80s/early 90s, recommend the following: Kinghorse, Slint, King Kong, Endpoint, Undermine, Oblong Box (the one from Louisville), Craine, etc... (they were the biggest headliners of the times). The cumulative combo is really special. No single scene matched that period. And, I think/I hope we all remain connected for the rest of our lives, because we experienced something really extraordinary.

Anonymous said...

Santa Cruz Risk it had a lot of songs in it. great band
Danny Way, Mike Youseffpour sections for one

heres a question. what band was on John Swopes section in Risk it?

Danilo Silva Lacerda said...

HEY, REU-POT IT ALBUM TOO FAR DO KINGHORSE PLEASE..THANK YOU