EMQ’s with KING BONG
Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Milan, Italy based Instrumental Psychedelic Stoner band, King Bong. Huge thanks to them for taking part.
What is your name, what do you play, and can you tell us a little bit about the history of the band?
We are King Bong, an instrumental psychedelic band. We play mostly improvised music. We started in 2008 with the aim of playing heavy riffs adding some improvisation and we’ve now published 16 albums. Our sound has evolved to include many different influences: what started off as a combination of doom riffs and psychedelic funk grooves evolved into progressive compositions first, and into free improvisation including elements of jazz and noise later.
How did you come up with your band name?
The name was actually the reason we started the band: on the 9th of March 2008 Teo sent an SMS to Andrea and Alberto, with a joke: “We should make a band called King Bong and play the doomiest riffs”. Said and done.
What Country/Region are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?
We’re from Milan, Italy. The country as a whole doesn’t have a huge metal/rock scene, if compared to others like Germany, or the UK, but Milan being a big city and closer to the borders with other countries is the city where most touring bands stop. Small live clubs have been struggling in recent years, and Covid has forced some to close. The scene is still there but it’s likely less healthy than a few years ago.
What is your latest release? (Album, EP, Single, Video)
“Beekse Bergen, vol. 6 – OGOPOGO”. Released on 5th March. It’s the latest chapter in our ongoing project: a series of live improvisations based on a map we drew.
(It’s 4 CD’s and 4 Hours long and what I’ve heard of it is pretty damn good! – Rick)
Taken from the above!
Beekse Bergen XXII w/ Chris Haskett (Henry Rollins Band, David Bowie, Tool).
Who have been your greatest influences?
They’re very different for each one of us, but as a band we could name the Grateful Dead, Black Sabbath, Motorpsycho, Parliament\Funkadelic, King Crimson, Metallica, Faith No More, Ulver, Miles.
What first got you into music?
Our parents exposed us to music since we were born, so it was natural for us to pick up an instrument when we were kids. Bizarrely enough, none of our parents are actually musicians!
If you could collaborate with a current band or musician who would it be?
We’d love to play with Nils Petter Molvær.
If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?
Roadburn! Because it’s the best festival, with the best music and we’ve been attending it for a decade. They’re able to constantly evolve and find new flavours of heavy music. They give every musician enough time (no 20 minutes sets at 1PM!), they have a fantastic sound system, they treat fans with great respect. It’s a dream.
What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?
Two friends from Rome brought us a huge piece of guanciale. It’s a kind of cured fatty meat that is the basic ingredient for carbonara (God forbid you use bacon!). We were very grateful, for several meals!
If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?
“Information is not knowledge.
Knowledge is not wisdom.
Wisdom is not truth.
Truth is not beauty.
Beauty is not love.
Love is not music.
Music is THE BEST.”
– Frank Zappa
If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?
What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?
We love the freedom that comes with art: we keep exploring and learning and we can’t wait to find something new to try. We hate the fact that it’s almost impossible to make a living out of it.
If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?
We’d love for it to be more about actual music.
Name one of your all-time favourite albums?
Blind Guardian – “Nightfall In Middle-Earth”
What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?
We enjoy a bit of everything, but certainly not cassettes. Fuck cassettes!
What’s the best gig that you have played to date?
We once played in Koper in a fantastic squat. It was fully packed, with a nice stage and a great sound crew. Half-way through our gig we were interrupted by local hero/artist/provocateur, Marko Brecelj. He was moved by our music and he needed to give a speech to the house. He then proceeded to thank us, and we resumed playing. Amazing night.
If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?
We were once told by a great artist that no matter what daily job you might have, if you’re a musician you will always be one, even when you don’t earn from it. We might work in different fields, but at the core we’re musicians.
Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?
Robert Fripp, Dave Grohl, Andy Summers, Grace Slick and Tony Iommi.
What’s next for the band?
We’ve also just reissued our 2017 LP “Sand ≈ Return” through Mandrone Records.
What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?
We’ve got a Facebook page and a BandCamp account, plus our albums are available on most major streaming services.
Jaffa Cakes? Are they a cake or a biscuit?
We’ve never tried them, but we can say that we love pulled pork.
Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?
The King is happy to welcome you in his family: come along, follow us in our explorations and we promise you’ll never get bored!
Disclaimer: This interview is solely the property of Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this interview, unless you have the strict permission of said party. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.