Marcus King has released “Blues Worse Than I Ever Had,” the final preview track ahead of his forthcoming solo album, Young Blood, due August 26. The track, co-written with Dan Auerbach, has a laid back groove and saturating slide guitar which soundtrack King’s visceral vocal, reflecting on a moment of despair and the hope that lies beyond it.
King said of “Blues Worse Than I Ever Had”: “At the time, I’d changed medications when I was trying to process the death of family members. I was coasting through life like a zombie. When I’d get off them, I’d feel things that happened six months ago for the first time and crash down.”
Accompanying the release of “Blues Worse Than I Ever Had”, King has dropped a live performance video, created at Auerbach’s Easy Eye Sound Studio, it features acclaimed musicians including Chris St. Hilaire on drums and Nick Movshon on bass. You can watch it below.
Young Blood’s tales of excess, salvation, break up and addiction, draw on some difficult and personal moments, in which King turned to his most stadium sized 70s rock influences, both for musical comfort and also as a foreboding warning. King recently shared with Rolling Stone that Paul Kossoff, cult 70s rock band Free’s guitarist, who died in connection to substance abuse at a similar age to King, was a driving force in him wanting to turn a corner in his life.
“I was seeing all these signs,” King recently told Rolling Stone, adding. “I was feeling really paranoid that something was trying to tell me to either slow down or that the end was inevitable and that it was coming pretty soon.”
Despite challenging personal circumstances, King has made his most accomplished work to date. The album has already received widespread acclaim. Jimmy Fallon shared King “is one his favorites”, before his electrifying performance of “Hard Working Man” on the Tonight Show.
SPIN praised King’s “classic ‘70s rock vibes.” FLOOD MAGAZINE proclaimed King “fully embodies the gritty rock sounds the songwriter’s always dipped his toes in.” Brooklyn Vegan exclaimed, “If you’ve got a place in your heart for stuff like The Allman Brothers, Lynyrd Skynyrd, or ZZ Top, it’d be tough to deny that Marcus truly captures the spirit of that era (and also really shreds.)” and Rolling Stone Magazine stated, he “turned a dark period into a blistering rock album.”
King has been an outlier from the very beginning. A fourth generation musician from Greenville, SC, who learned guitar at age 3 from his blues rock musician father Marvin King. He navigated troublesome school years to quickly become known as one of the most promising young artists of our time.
He followed breakout success with The Marcus King Band, with his Auerbach produced 2020 solo album debut, El Dorado. It garnered a Grammy Award nomination in the category of “Best Americana Album” and critical praise from The New York Times to NPR’s Weekend Edition. With unparalleled performance prowess and a dynamic live show, King has sold out historic venues from The Beacon to The Filmore. He has opened for Chris Stapleton, Greta Van Fleet and Nathaniel Rateliff and graced the bills of Stagecoach, Fuji Rock, Rock Werchter and more. He also recently launched his own custom Gibson guitar and signature Orange guitar amplifier, the MK Ultra, which sold out before it even hit the stores.
Marcus King recently announced a massive headline US tour, with dates through September and October 2022 supporting the release of his forthcoming solo album, Young Blood. He will be taking his stadium sized sound to esteemed venues across the U.S, including two nights at venues such as New York’s Beacon Theatre and Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium. Neal Francis and Ashland Craft support select dates, and the tour features comedy by Dean Del Ray.