King King delighting Leeds Playing Live Tonight

King King kick off with a blistering set in Leeds

King King kick off their October 2021 mini-tour with a blistering set in Leeds; catch them in your town for their remaining dates with Special Guests When The Rivers Meet

King King kick off their October 2021 mini-tour with a blistering set in Leeds; catch them in your town for their remaining dates with Special Guests When Rivers Meet

The venue for this enticing line-up was set in the bowels of Leeds University’s student union, normally host to nightclub ‘Stylus’, and an entirely different musical scene. The intimate setting and dark lighting were perfect for a night of contrasting takes on contemporary blues for this sell-out show.

King King kick off with a blistering set in Leeds
photo credit Adam Kennedy

Support act, photogenic married couple Grace and Aaron Bond, the creative force behind ‘When Rivers Meet’, burst onto the scene in 2019 to great acclaim with two ear-catching EP’s and an award-winning album, ‘We Fly Free’. Due to lockdown, the duo hadn’t been able to tour any of this material until now. Despite having no backing band they easily filled the space with a combination of exceptionally powerful lead vocals courtesy of Grace and solid slide guitar work from partner Aaron.

‘Walking On The Wire’ from their debut album was particularly enjoyable, featuring a fantastic slide duet with Grace playing her electric resonator mandolin and Aaron on electric guitar. Another highlight in the short but powerful set was “Innocence of Youth” from the EP of the same name, a brilliant song with a moody beat and featuring more strong slide work, this time on a cigar box guitar. They were a real revelation, and I can’t wait to see how good they’ll be with a full line-up when they tour as headliners in April next year.

King King kick off with a blistering set in Leeds
photo credit Mark Ellis

After a break, the veteran main act KIng King arrived on stage to the backing of ‘Highway to Hell’ with leader Alan Nimmo in his customary kilt alongside recent joiner, brother Stevie, and got the ball rolling with the opening track from 2017’s ‘Exile & Grace’ album ‘(She don’t) Gimme No Lovin’, a great driving track to get the crowd going, capped off with a powerful solo from Alan Nimmo, a recurring feature throughout the night.  

Their set featured a wide selection of songs from their back catalogue and highlighted that at their best the band’s songs can hold their own against any of their peers on the blues-rock scene.  ‘Fire in My Soul’ and ‘One World’, two of the punchier and memorable songs from their last album, 2020’s ‘Maverick’ both featured some exceptional keyboards and soloing before the band reached back into their repertoire to keep the temperature cooking with songs like the iconic ‘Rush Hour’ with its beautiful intro’, showcasing Stevie’s superb vocals, building up to the chorus and ensemble singing from the whole audience.  Also from the 2015 album ‘Reaching for the Light’ was a memorable and fully committed performance of ‘You Stopped the Rain’, written by Alan for his brother.   A strong set closed with the latest single ‘I Will Not Fall’, and included a one-off solo from Stevie which was just perfect, every note hitting the spot and contrasting with the more dynamic style of his brother.  With the crowd demanding more the band returned for three more numbers, a typical mixture of slow (the piano-driven ballad ‘When my Winter Comes’), mid-tempo anthemic (‘Stranger to Love’) and rocker (the jaunty ‘Let Love In’).  A highly enjoyable performance from a band that continues to build on its strong reputation as an excellent live act.

Bluesdoodles thanks photographers Adam Kennedy & Mark Ellis for the use of their wonderful shots capturing the essence of live music. Copyright & all rights belong to the photographers – Enjoy the gallery of shots King King have a list of UK dates: October 2021 (with ‘When Rivers Meet) and February 2022 (withThe Damn Truth) Full details are below.

King King October 2021 UK Tour with special guests When Rivers Meet
Tickets –

Bexhill, De La Warr Pavilion          Tuesday 19 October 2021
Bilston, The Robin 2                         Wednesday 20 October 2021
Cambridge Junction                        Friday 22 October 2021
The Queen’s Hall, Edinburgh       Sunday 24 October 2021

King King – February 2022 UK Tour with special guests The Damn Truth
Tickets –

Grand Opera House York               Thursday 10 February 2022
Newcastle, Boiler Shop                  Friday 11 February 2022
O2 Academy Glasgow                    Saturday 12 February 2022
Manchester Academy                    Thursday 17 February 2022
Sheffield, The Leadmill                   Saturday 19 February 2022
Cardiff Y Plas                                  Sunday 20 February 2022
Birmingham Town Hall                   Tuesday 22 February 2022
Bury St Edmunds, The Apex         Wednesday 23 February 2022
London, Electric Ballroom             Thursday 24 February 2022

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