QJB (right) and Doc Satori (left), aka The Real King(s) of Spain, are an art rock duo who fuse melody and rhythm with an occasionally more discordant score to reflect the nature of the lyrics, which deal with subjects from class antagonism to Dionysian excess and many others in between. Their first album, The Future of Mass Hysteria, is a rich and textured recording that explores the pain, anger, fury, injustice, hallucinatory bliss, hope and intoxication of the human spirit. They are currently working on a second album which is proving to be more melodic than the first, though no less scathing in its outlook.
Veterans of the singer-songwriter circuit, the Bristol-based musicians met around 2008 and first collaborated on a 6-minute spoken word piece, Songs of Katrina, which addresses the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans. Buoyed by the outcome of that collaboration (which can be heard on Soundcloud and here on the website) they began writing and the album is the result.
‘The Future of Mass Hysteria’ is an album that comprises electronica, instrumentation, spoken word, sung vocals, downloads, samples and is a mixture of political and artistic material - angry, blissed, provocative, hallucinatory, experimental, poppy, using their experience of previous projects fused with that indefinable ‘magic’ that exists in any successful collaboration.
The first single, “To Watch Over Me” (the video of which was made with local film-makers YourProductions and directed by Damian Michael Polley) tells of a society filled with a network of cameras spying on our every public move under the pretense of protection but also speaks of the desperate need to be needed and the suffocating relationships that exist between people and their government, religion and between each other. The video for See a Little Light was shot around the Stokes Croft area of Bristol and was directed by Nathan Davis and Ian Patrick.
The album was co-produced and remixed with local Bristol producer Paul Whitrow, veteran of Channel House Studios and has been creating interest on the local scene with both new and established figures.
Since its release in September 2013 RKoS have assembled a live band to deliver a live show that is be more than a simple recreation of the album, with a more 'organic', instrumented sound. This doesn't lose any of the vitality, originality of flavour of the album, however, and the shows are being well received in Bristol (The Fleece, Exchange, The Thunderbolt, Mr Wolf's among others) and elswhere (The Hope & Anchor, London and venues in Liverpool, Manchester, Cardiff, Leeds and Bath among them).