Hailing from London, To Kill A King may seem a little bit cliché on the surface. They formed at university in Leeds, and they wear the 'oh so hip' folk-rock-indie-pop label of so many of their peers - it might be easy for this delightful little band to wash over you altogether. Don't let them, there is a lot more ambition evident here than meets the eye, if latest EP 'Word of Mouth' is anything to go by.
If you heard To Kill A King on the radio, the sharp guitars coupled with Ralph Pelleymounter's croon may evoke a juxtaposition of Editors and Coldplay. However, put this EP through a decent set of headphones on a cold walk home, perhaps thinking of someone special, and it becomes clear that these guys have the potential to go far.
The EP kicks off with 'Howling'. Warm, bass filled synth flood the ears - quickly giving way to ambitious multi-instrumentation that will undoubtedly evoke thoughts of The National and delicate vocal harmonies that will pull at the heartstrings. Building to a powerful metallic climax, this really is a great start. Remarkably, To Kill A King ease into top gear on 'Funeral', with the intro easily adding shine to any Apple ad, giving way to a tour-de-force in really great song-craft.
Things slow down with 'Besides She Said', whereas 'Wolves' is a bright, catchy modern indie song with the obligatory anthemic chorus. Momentum builds once again with the brilliant 'Rays', which is rousing indie-pop at it's best, evoking the highlights of big hitters such as Bombay Bicycle Club. Intricate guitars are underpinned with a tight, flexible bass line and a masterful vocal performance from Pelleymounter, ending in a frantic flurry of drums and hi-hat.
Closing track 'Let It Die' demonstrates the emotional maturity of the lyrics that run through the heart of this EP. "The saddest part of a broken heart isn't the end so much as the start" will remain with you long after the final chords fade away.
Give me a broken heart any time if it means the start of something this special.