The Duke Spirit: “Procession”
The Duke Spirit’s 2008 album Neptune featured an instantly iconic cover photo: the band lined up in a row, holding instruments and old records for the world to see. It’s an apt image, given the London group’s sound, which marries classic with modern, creating something uniquely there own.
The group formed in 2003 after several of the members met at art school. The British magazine NME championed them from the beginning on the strength of a handful of songs and an EP. While their debut album, Cuts Across The Land, was delayed due to record label obstacles, it finally saw the light of day in 2005. Fans might have had to wait a bit, but that wait was well worth it.
The Duke Spirit came with a fully-formed sound, one rooted in the darker ends of blues and folk but updated for a new generation. Lead singer Liela Moss has one of those voices that’s instantly recognizable. She’s the calm center of the storm; while the band turns up the volume, Moss is able to keep everything from spiraling out of control. Their latest album, last year’s appropriately-titled Bruiser, garnered the group big-time praise, back home as well as here in the states. The sound has gotten even dirtier, but the Duke Spirit still manage to keep their pop sense intact. The band is in the midst of a high-profile tour with Jane’s Addiction, and it offers the Duke Spirit an opportunity to put their epic songs in some big venues.
Recently, the group stopped by KUT’s Studio 1A for a live session and performed today’s song of the day, “Procession.” Our studio is a much smaller space than they’re used to, but the Duke Spirit made it sound like the biggest arena in the world.