New Band of the Day #38: Our Krypton Son

our krypton son

Debut LP Fleas & Diamonds is out now via Smalltown America.

Who: Chris McConaghy, Conor Mason, Chris Cassidy, Caolan Austin, Colin Norrby.

What: Indie/alt folk.

Where: Derry, Northern Ireland.

Why: Employing a suave and lush orchestral tinged version of indie/alt folk to explore the fundamentals of human experience, Our Krypton Son (aka Chris McConaghy) strikes a balance somewhere between The National at their most musically reflective and the more introspective lyrical explorations of Nick Cave. There’s a richness and depth of sound here that is simply captivating. Orchestral arrangements swirl and dance around skeletons of beautifully simple folk songs picked out on acoustic guitars, graceful pianos and gently adorned with McConaghy’s heartfelt but restrained baritone.

A personal favourite is ‘A Crochet Heart’. An elegant and graceful track, it sways to and fro led by a rich organ and McConaghy’s aforementioned vocal prowess. Beautiful with a slight sense of foreboding and tension, the track is brimming with evocative lyrics and imagery (“Well the crochet heart / Was darned on the sleeve / Of a coat made from goat’s hair / And a satin weave”) that build a very distinct world for the song. Eventually, the song reaches a brief climax via a free jazz sax solo that is wonderfully at odds with the precision and control of the rest of the track. The rest of the album is no less impressive with songs softly burrowing under the skin with their warm charms. Keep an ear out for the rather splendid re-imagining or Weezer’s ‘Buddy Holly’.

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