Introspective lyrics, creamy vocals, and cheerful beats reminiscent of old-school rock ‘n’ roll come together to form a dreamlike combination in King of Foxes’ newest record, Salt and Honey. Fronted by singer and songwriter Olivia Street, the band has conjured up a new concoction, this time taking on a more upbeat, poppy sound.
“The last record was a lot more shoegaze kind of indie rock, but for this record I kind of wanted to strip it back a little bit and leave room for some light and air. So, it still has that rock ‘n’ roll backbone, but you get a little bit of light in the room,” Street explains.
While the new record feels cheerier than the band’s previous work, Street’s contemplative lyrics remain constant.
Salt and Honey is inspired by themes of self-preservation and plays with the idea of memories being sweet while burning at the same time.
“The name ‘Salt and Honey’ came to me when I was thinking of how people always used to preserve food in salt, and honey never goes bad,” Street says.
This motif can be seen shining through the album’s lead single “Backsliders,” the music video of which shows a young Street experiencing memories of feeling like an outsider and eventually overcoming that emotion.
The duality of salt and honey, and sweetness and burning, brings to attention a common theme of juxtaposition that can be seen consistently across Street’s work as well as the band’s evolution. From the very inception of its name, King of Foxes, Street anointed her musical journey with a theme of contrasts.
“Foxes are both fierce and fragile; the hunter and the hunted. ” she says.
Perhaps, this is a reflection of Street’s music as well.
Growing up at the tail end of the grunge era, listening to Nirvana and punk rock, her music incorporates elements of classic rock ‘n’ roll and grunge, while also carrying with it softer elements of pop. King of Foxes manages to blend these two contrasting styles into a perfect amalgamation that manages to leave you with a sense of guileless optimism while also being fun and peppy. Perhaps, the underlying theme of juxtapositions is what gives King of Foxes’ music its distinctive quality that feels ever so familiar, but it always leaves you wanting more.
Street hopes that the new album allows “people to see slices of their own life in it, share a journey together, and find comfort in the fact that we’re all struggling through the same things and nobody has it figured out.”
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