Recommended: Kingdom – VIP Edition EP
Ever since Kingdom’s inclusion in the Night Slugs empire, the Brooklyn-based badman has been at his best while imprinting the signature UK label’s aesthetic on insular/regional North American club sounds. Just a few years ago, hyperactive scenes in Newark, Baltimore and Harlem were all but completely unknown to the general music listening public, but in 2013, their influence is palpable on a global scale. As Fade To Mind don, Kingdom has brought many of these local sounds under one umbrella (an achievement that cannot be overstated) while also functioning as one of the most ardent supporters of unrealized and yet-to-blow artists. So when the Los Angeles transplant releases a compilation of previously unreleased VIPs and edits, it’s probably time to perk those ears up. The nine track “VIP Edition” is essentially a package of Kingdom’s personal DJ tools that offer a tangible interrelation between Kingdom’s DJ/curatorial work and his production talents. To a longtime Kingdom/Fade To Mind/Night Slugs supporter, the majority of “VIP Edition” won’t be new, but the point of a limited release (CD and 12″) like this is to satiate the heads and provide insight into the man behind the moniker.
Stream: Kingdom – Fukin Jaker (Fade To Mind)
“VIP Edition” includes updated Kingdom takes on Usher’s “Appetite”, Nguzunguzu’s “Timesup” and Kingdom’s own “Okay To Dance”, but the real highlight comes in the form of the tape’s only true original. “Fukin Jaker” represents everything dark and hedonistic (good and holy in our book) about Kingdom’s sound, from the diva vocals to the punching rhythmic elements. The track is rough around the edges and obliquely indulgent, but has that undeniable rump shake-ability that is easier said than actually achieved in a club setting. The fact that Kingdom has probably played “Fukin Jaker” out dozens of times only makes the track, and the entire compilation for that matter, more visceral in a home listening experience. In a traditional sense, “VIP Edition” doesn’t add a whole lot to the Kingdom and/or club music canon, but that’s not the implied purpose of a remix/edits tape of this sort. From the opening seconds of “Fukin Jaker”, Kingdom’s intent is clearly laid out: to force the listener to uninhibitedly get down in the most unpretentious way possible.
Stream: Kingdom – Stalker Ha [Rap Mix] (Fade To Mind)
Kingdom’s “VIP Edition” is available now from the Fade To Mind webstore.