King air

King Air: “Power Ballads”

On this second New Music Friday of 2024, we just gotta give a bow to some Austin pop rock royalty. We’re talkin’ about husband-and-wife songwriter-producers Joy and Bill Baldwin, best known by their collaboration King Air. After securing a legacy in marriage and parenthood, the Baldwins – both veterans of the ’90s local live scene – finally sat down and held court in what would become the pair’s kingdom – songwriting.

As with any parents in need of some quality quiet time, King Air initially crafts most of their tunes on the acoustic front. That said, over the past dozen years and four EPs they’ve churned out some really impressive guitar-vocal-and-drum-driven indie rock that incorporates the most appeasing breezes of ’80s college jangle, ’90s alternative, and turn-of-the-millennium post-punk-revival.

Well, next Friday King Air’s decreed to bless us peasants with their debut full-length, Natural High. We’ve already caught some of Natural High‘s buzz and fuzz from two lead singles released last year, both of which benefit from an ongoing relationship with Nada Surf/Moving Panoramas collaborator Louie Lino. So while we don’t know what’ll happen to the grid during next week’s big freeze, us subjects can at least expect a modicum of harmony under King Air’s two rulers based on the LP’s final lead single, “Power Ballads”. Electricity and cold weather aside, “Power Ballads” charges and warms with a hit-inspired hearth that evokes heavyweights without sounding derivative.

King Air: “Last of a Breed”

As the city continues to change, a comparatively few amount of veterans from the old school scene have stuck around to release new stuff in 2021. But for four talented musicians that’ve performed in Austin since the ’90s, they’ve merely adopted a new handle and begun to share fresh material at this turn of a decade.

Channeling the likes of alternative pioneers Velvet Underground and R.E.M., King Air┬ácast forth their debut EP Tracks Made in Dust on Christmas Day, staking their claim of atmospheric royalty with just as many songs as members and rounding out the record with a real trance-inducer, “Last of a Breed”!